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Or threatens to.

Google has long removed sensitive search results from its Chinese search engine at Google.cn, but said Tuesday it plans to end the censorship and may ultimately shut down the company’s China offices.

However, China is highly unlikely to allow Google to run an uncensored version of the search engine, according to observers.

Google has in fact said plainly it will not operate in China under present censorship rules. This follows attempts by hackers to access gmail accounts belonging to known human rights activists.

If Google refuses to filter results and supply information as requested by the Chinese government, China is likely to block access to Google within its borders.

This will cost Google money, enough to hurt, even if not a major percentage of its $22 billion in annual revenues.

Let’s hope Google sticks to its motto ‘Don’t be evil’.

And don’t co-operate with evil either, no matter how much money is involved.

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