Silicon Valley based Internet giant Google fighting against undamped censorship of Chinese authorities. Liberal, free market against communist protectionism. Many multinational companies accept Chinese conditions in view of lucrative business opportunities. Google was one of them – until now it seems. However, is it really the censorship – and thus ethical concerns – that make Google think about leaving the Asian country or is it perhaps the consequence of poor return on investment and even poorer prospects to “rule” the Chinese market?
Business ethics is increasingly concerned with the values of business as a whole and how a company integrates values, such as honesty, trust, integrity, respect, and fairness, into its policies, practices, and decision making. Trust? Well, trust is crucial to Google. Like nobody else (as far as I know, correct me if I’m wrong) Google collects our data and (e.g. search) behavior. We allow this because we trust the “friendly” giant and find his tools (gmail, picassa, youtube, google books, scholar ….) useful, time and money saving. What would happen to Google if we, the customers, wouldn’t trust it anymore? It would either become a despot (giving a “shit”) or disappear.
Read the whole article in the sustainabilityforum (where it first appeared).
Picture credit: JasonIT