Like a lot people, I find the technology sector fascinating to read about. Which is good because the press puts out a couple of stories an hour about Steve Jobs, Google and Microsoft—with a little dab of Larry Ellison and his thrifty ways thrown in for variety. These days the tech giants are often in the same story, as they battle each other for mobile and/or search domination. To me though, the most interesting battle involves Google and the Chinese government, who have traded words about Google’s January announcement that it may leave the country because of censorship rules. With a March deadline looming, the pressure is on Google to make a final decision. If Google does leave, its Chinese partners will be left hung out to dry, and Google customers will be without many of the search tools and features the company is famous for—censorship or not. Whatever Google’s next move is, it’s surely to affect its reputation in a major way. I’d love to be a fly on the boardroom wall as execs debate the pros and cons. From a public relations standpoint, what do you think—should Google stay in China, or go?
–Scott Van Camp