China fought back Google’s assault on the Great Firewall today, blocking any questionable content from Google’s Hong Kong site, and putting the screws on Google’s other operations. Google is currently redirecting mainland Chinese users to its uncensored Hong Kong site, but the government has stepped in to block any searches for objectionable content. Beijing’s also pressured China’s top two mobile phone companies into breaking off deals that put Google search on their devices.
Some tech analysts tell the New York Times that they expect China to eventually block Google’s mainland or Hong Kong addresses altogether. “It’s going to boil down to whether authorities feel it is acceptable for users to be redirected to that site without having to figure it out themselves,” says one Beijing-based analyst, though he notes that Beijing probably fears angering China’s many loyal Googlers, who tend to be a vocal bunch.