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It’s been well reported on Google’s kowtowing to the Chinese government in regards to censorship. This was based on the requests of a foreign government. However that was recently changed.

More recently, I’ve discovered that Google censors specific domain names from using its hosted Google apps service. In the example below, a combination of letters in the domain name spell a swear word, like PenIsland:

Just when I start to wonder how many other things they filter, it is discovered today they’ve decided to start filtering based on requests from the American private sector movie and music industry! As reported today by Torrentfreak, they’ve even gone as far as forbidding keywords such as “uTorrent”, which is completely legal software used to download things using peer two peer networks. If you’ve ever downloaded Ubuntu GNU/Linux for example, you likely used this impressive technology. The implications of such a simple filter are staggering, it has the ability to kill a company, as well as a network protocol.

While Google had often been thought of as being open and free, even though they had the potential to filter out content, domains, software, and network protocols, the fact that they’ve now demonstrated their ability to filter each one of these means it’s time for us to hope for some competition.