Google.cn or Google’s Chinese version was first launched in 2006 but it was different from global version of Google (not only in terms of language “Chinese”) in terms of censorship
applied by Chinese government. Everything was going fine until China blocked Google’s Youtube in 2009 due to a video on Youtube showing Chinese security forces beating Tibetans.
In 2010 many companies like Google, Adobe Systems, Symantec & Yahoo were attacked by Chinese hackers. Although Google didn’t blamed Chinese Government explicitly for the hacks, but Google announced that it will no longer censor the search results in China & will pull out of China if necessary. But Google cannot pull out from world’s largest country (in terms of population at-least!) or the world’s largest market I would say. So the search results filtering were re-enabled in a few weeks without any explanation.
Due to this, Google’s market share dropped to 30% in 2010 & the major search engine became Baidu with 60% market share.
In the meantime Google discontinued some of its services in China & tried several steps to avoid censorship like redirecting all search queries from Google.cn (Google China) to Google.com.hk (Google Hong Kong), as Hong Kong had much higher freedom of speech. This allowed Google to provide uncensored (well I would say almost uncensored as it is still China) Chinese search results. In March 2010 Google.cn (Google China) was banned in China. So Google instead replaced it with Google.com.hk for Chinese users to use.
In 2012 China got measures to block Google & its services like Gmail completely. Google gave up its guard in December 2012 & Google’s anti-censorship warning mark on search results was removed. Google quietly showed white flag to Chinese government & now all the search results in China are censored.
In 2012 Google’s share in search is only around 5% but that too is a very big number “25 million” users & looks like Google does not want to give that up. This defeat of Google in this war means that the search results would now be filtered according to Chinese government & they will be delayed in some cases up to a minute. A normal user would not wait for 60 seconds for his results to come up, probably it would be better to use Baidu.
What do you think who is right Chinese Government or Google tell us in comment section.