I will be shocked if Google really follows through with pulling out China Operations because of the compromised emails. I think Google is just trying to win points with the US Gov in an effort to gain traction in other areas they have having problems in , such as the copy righted materials being scanned and broadcast to the world. I asked a few people here at the John R. Carlisle Institute if they thought Google would really pull out of China and no one thought they would really do it. Time will tell and we will see, probably sooner than later.
They shouldn’t have been censoring results to begin with. On the other hand, this “let’s make human rights exceptions for China” is pervasive in the U.S. all the way to the federal government, so it’s not surprising.
Hopefully they’ll follow through with it, though I do think it was awfully naive of them thinking they could make it work in China in the first place without compromising “don’t be evil” (or whatever their promise/corporate motto exactly was).
Furthermore, the “Google censorship in China” issue is overhyped IMHO. The chinese regulations are related to the “.cn” domain and the possibility to make business in the internal chinese market (where Baidu is definitely stronger than Google). When Chinese people want to see the uncensored Google, they just need to type e.g. “www.google.co.uk” instead of “www.google.cn”.
This “Google is different and cares about human rights” campaign just seems to me a publicity stunt, covering the loss of interest in investing in the Chinese market.