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March 10, 2010

Comments

yang yi

I cannot agree with you any more. Moreover, I think the Chinese government tries to use the Internet and other high-tech to soft control the society and grasp new potential market.

stuart

Interesting stuff.

"Perhaps more important is whether, even if China were to lose the case, the rest of the world would be willing or able to enforce it."

Certainly it would not be enforceable, and Beijing would stick out its chest in condemnation and defiance with all the rhetoric at her disposal.

I suspect it's a case of the debate being more important than the outcome, and I believe it would be more divisive in the long term if China is given a free pass on its paranoid control of information. Therefore, the instinct to challenge Beijing on this issue is right, I feel.

Bookmaker odds for your contingencies, David:

1000/1 comply, and watch the country flooded with all manner of content
10/1 partially comply, opening up access to more sites but come up with ways to circumvent the ruling;
1000/1 ignore the ruling, continuing to censor but risking sanctions that may provoke a trade war during a difficult economic period; or
1000/1 withdraw from the WTO, replacing it with a series of bi-lateral agreements.

And one of my own for a balanced book:

1/10 condemn the ruling, tell the world what a wonderfully open utopia China is, accuse the west of economic discrimination, and pretend to comply while carrying on regardless.

Daddy Warbox

@stuart - 1/10 is a strange ratio. :P

Yeah that's pretty much all they're ever going to do from this point on.

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