TechCrunch is reporting today that China is redirecting internet searches from Google, Yahoo, and MSN and I assume all other engines – to Chinese search engine Baidu. However I can’t find anything but little anecdotal posts to support this. Looks to me like some videos and blogs have been affected, but that the big search engine issues may have related to a temporarily problem or testing of DNS stuff.
They suggest this may relate to the recent award given to the Dalai Lama I’d guess China is spending a lot of time thinking and experimenting with ways to maximize their search revenues, and this redirection, if it really did happen as dramatically as some suggest, would probably be testing ways to gather data on how well Baidu monetizes search compared to the agreements they have with other players.
Wait – here’s a blogger in Beijing, China saying that he’s getting to places TechCrunch says have been sent to Baidu, like Google. Not sure what’s up …
Is this a false alarm? I think so, though it might be another example of how China’s centralized socialist economy can create power and monopoly conditions the most ruthless old style US capitalists could only dream about. Increasingly control of the online landscape is control of the business landscape, and as China’s massive economic expansion continues it will be very interesting to see how the China wields her power.
Note – I just edited this post quite a bit thanks to the new info. Still dunno what’s going on.