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Monday, February 06, 2006

NoLuv4Google.com in NY Times

Tom Zeller Jr of the New York Times covers NoLuv4Google in his article on US internet companies relationships with China. The broken-hearted ex-Googler quoted below is Kunchok Wangmo.

It is telling, to say the least, that the darling of so many technophiles — which promised to "do no evil" — is now on the receiving end of spontaneous boycotts, with disillusioned search-lovers looking for alternatives. These signs of lost innocence also show that the race for China may soon offer a selling point to companies that don't cooperate with repressive regimes.

"Today, I know you don't deserve me," wrote one visitor to NoLuv4Google.org, a site where users can "break up" with Google and officially boycott the search giant on Valentine's Day, Feb. 14. "You betrayed my love and trust. I have been with you for so many years. Now, we are through! FOREVER. I am gonna hook up with IceRocket."

IceRocket is one of several search alternatives listed at NoLuv4Google.org, which is run by a group called Students for a Free Tibet. Clusty.com, a search site developed by several Carnegie Mellon computer scientists, is another. Clusty proudly states that it "never censors search results" or excludes material "that would be objectionable to governments or would be unlawful in unelected, nondemocratic regimes."

In an e-mail message, Mark Cuban, IceRocket's founder, put it more bluntly: "IceRocket doesn't and won't censor. We index more than one million Chinese-language blogs. No chance we censor or block anything in this lifetime."

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