New Google China Dilemma: Get Maps License Or Get Lost

Google must get a license to operate Google Maps in China or risk state action against the company. According to Computerworld, “China will investigate and prosecute Google next July” if it doesn’t obtain the necessary license to continue operating its mapping service.

The purpose of the mapping license regulations is ostensibly to “prevent security leaks and to ensure all online maps would provide accurate data for its users.” China probably sees Google Maps as a security threat and a potential extension of American intelligence.

The article reports that all mapping servers must be in China under the recently enacted regulations. In October the Chinese government launched an official mapping service called Map World that presumably competes with Google Maps.

The license renewal itself shouldn’t be a major problem, however. Google renewed its general license to operate in China this July. But what makes this all much more interesting is yesterday’s Wikileaks document dump that all-but-confirmed the Chinese government and its operatives were behind the Google GMail break-in in January that lead to the long Google-China standoff.

Related posts on Google-China:

Related Topics: Channel: Local | Google: Legal | Google: Maps & Local | Google: Outside US

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About The Author: is a Contributing Editor at Search Engine Land. He writes a personal blog Screenwerk, about SoLoMo issues and connecting the dots between online and offline. He also posts at Internet2Go, which is focused on the mobile Internet. Follow him @gsterling.

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    Google and China, at it again.

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