Individual Case: Identifying a Cross-Cultural Dilemma
Group IBA 1.06,
Nyan Lwin Aung - 1895281
Tutor: Hille Bruns
Date: 17 June 2010
China's Google dilemma: Leave from China to keep the neutrality and independence though losing all opportunities, or accept the rules and keep on fighting at all cost
Founded in 2005, Google China, subsidiary of Google Inc., had to make a hard decision after four years of its leading role in China. On March the 23rd of 2010, the world’s largest search-engine company is shutting down its servers in China and redirecting all the search queries from Google.cn to Google.com.hk.
Cultural issue at hand
More or less, Google had to decide between strict restrictions or losing all current or potential business opportunities in the world most populated country. The population of China has reached over 1.3 billion, representing the 20% of world population. The closing of Google in China has led to the boost of its domestic competitors Baidu and Sina. Besides, China’s enormous growth of internet users and booming internet advertisement market also made it hard for Google. For Google, leaving China means losing its all the best opportunities from the biggest internet market.
Actually, Google has had a difficult time to keep abreast with its domestic competitors because of cultural and language barriers. Native Chinese would prefer the crowded and busy sites of Baidu and Sina rather than clean interface of Google’s websites. Also, Chinese domestic search engines offered features like bulletin boards and music-downloading services. In addition to cultural issues, the language barrier seems to be a gap between Google and the native Chinese. For instance, Chinese people have trouble spelling Google or don’t know its Chinese name “Guge”, meaning “Valley Song”.
Making things worse, during the economic crisis, Google China has suffered from high turnover and was recently forced... [continues]
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