Yahoo’s Yang Defends China Actions

    September 12, 2005
    WebProNews Staff

The company is under an obligation to obey the law wherever it operates, and had to comply with Chinese authorities.

Reporters Without Borders claimed in a news release that Yahoo Holdings of Hong Kong provided Chinese investigators with the IP address used by journalist Shi Tao. The authorities connected that address with an email sent by Mr. Shi to a New York-based web site.

That email contained what prosecutors characterized as a “state secret.” It discussed how the government planned to deal with possible activities and the media, related to the 15th anniversary of the Tiananmen Square massacre in 1989.

Yahoo co-founder Jerry Yang, appearing at a summit in Hangzhou, could not discuss the case, which has seen Mr. Shi sentenced to ten years in prison. Mr. Yang said the company receives legal requests for information all the time, USA Today reports.

Search Engine Journal noted how former US president Bill Clinton, appearing at the same summit, said: “In China, I think, that so far the political system and restraint on political speech in the Internet has not seemed to have any adverse commercial consequences. It will be interesting to see whether that is true of the future.”

Both Mr. Yang and Mr. Clinton were in China as guests of recent Yahoo investment target The China Internet Summit featured them as attendees gathered to discuss the future of online commerce and other issues pertaining to the increase in Internet users in China, now numbering over 100 million people.

David Utter is a staff writer for WebProNews covering technology and business. Email him here.