Google Analytics is one of the most popular web analytics packages around. The fact that the standard version of Google Analytics is free plays a big part in its adoption, but more than that, it’s a very robust platform that can provide a great deal of insight concerning your site’s performance. Furthermore, the fact that over 10 million sites have Google Analytics installed demonstrates the software suite’s popularity.
However, if you try to access Google Analytics from Cuba, you’re greeted with the following response:
We’re: unable to grant you access to Google Analytics at this time.
A connection Has Been Established Between your current IP address and acountry sanctioned by the U.S. government. For more information, see http://www.ustreas.gov/offices/enforcement/ofac/ .
Essentially, Google is respecting the sanctions against Cuba, ones that have been in place for 50 years, and by doing so, they aren’t allowing people from Cuba to access their service. A spokesperson for Google acknowledged as much:
As a US company, we comply with US export controls and trade sanctions that limit us from offering certain services in certain countries,” Google said in an emailed reply to an AFP inquiry. “In order to abide by these laws, our terms of service have always prohibited the use of Google Analytics in sanctioned countries,” it said. “There’s now a technical block in place as well.”
The Cuban press does not support Google’s course of action, calling it “outrageous censorship.” The report also reveals Google has blocked access to other services like Google Earth, Google’s Desktop Search tool and Google Code Search. While this hasn’t been confirmed by Google, if you’re going to obey such embargos, then blocking access to multiple services only makes sense.
Is Google doing the “right thing” by blocking access to these services or should they approach as a global entity instead of as an American?