Friday, April 20, 2007

Technology versus Humanity

For a while now, I have been wondering about the moral responsibility of people like us (see here and here), who work in the tech industry here in the Bay Area for human rights abuses enabled by our products. Here's the first real effort I have seen to put some legal and real shape to the concerns:

Yahoo! sued over torture of Chinese dissident
Chinese political prisoner sues Yahoo! in a US federal court in what is believed to be first case of its kind
Rhys Blakely
A Chinese political prisoner sued Yahoo! in a US federal court, accusing the internet company of helping the Chinese government torture him by providing information that led to his arrest.
The suit, filed under the Alien Tort Claims Act and the Torture Victims Protection Act, is believed to be the first of its kind made against an American internet company.
More here....

The only other story I have noticed in this regards was:

Gag Orders
Is the work of Cisco Systems and other high-tech companies helping China to crack down on dissent?
By DK Sweet
EARLIER this year, on CNBC, business news junkies were treated to another superlative on-camera performance by one of America's foremost business superstars. Donald Trump may best personify the cheesy pop-culture idea of a celebrity businessman, but to the stockholder class, Cisco Systems' John Chambers is the Real Deal. Compare the income, size, growth and influence of international Internet infrastructure colossus Cisco to The Donald's twice-bankrupt real estate empire and Trump might as well be Chambers' pool boy.
More here...

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