29 Dec

Facebook.Cn as China’s new online community playground? Ask Baidu.Com.

Facebook freaks (Facebook’s biggest fans) have flooded into China’s consciousness today, with news stories appearing of The Giving Pledge member, Mark Zuckerberg meeting with Google‘s Chinese counter-part, .

Robin is the Chinese billionaire co-founder of Baidu (search engine) who agreed to meet with Mark Zuckerberg and the CEO of state-owned telecom giant China Mobile, Wang Jianzhou; the CEO of leading online portal and microblog site, Charles Chao; and the billionaire head of Alibaba Group and online retail juggernaut Taobao, Jack Ma.

Forbes describes Mark’s experience as being an exercise of training in ‘how to play nice with the Chinese government,’ and charting the golden Chinese road of how to make a shite-load of money in China. A censored Facebook in China is what the government is asking for.

[Priscilla Chan, girlfriend of Mark Zuckerberg helps dude stay inside the red zones of new prosperity]

Gady Epstein has written some good commentary on it. Gady flows like so: “Meeting people like Li, Wang, Chao and Ma is smart because entering China will be tricky: Launching “” would require deft maneuvering with the Chinese government, of course, and has the potential to be a public and customer relations nightmare that could dwarf the problems Google had in its attempt to host a China-based search engine. We know how that ended, but more important, the execs Zuckerberg has met with all will have some ideas on how to navigate these issues.

Commentators have had a field day speculating about Zuckerberg’s field trip, including my colleague Oliver Chiang, who followed the China vacation from the quirky planning stages to his latest stop, and who noted that one Baidu executive, at least, has spoken up on his own in favor of a China entry for Facebook. Blogger Bill Bishop cheekily suggests another option, that Facebook offer Chinese Internet users a way around the Great Firewall to use the service, which has been blocked since just after the Xinjiang riots of 2009 (less controversially, Bishop also suggests Zuckerberg could win some Chinese fans by proposing to his girlfriend on the Great Wall of China, instead of breaching the Great Firewall). China’s Global Times, meanwhile, dismissed Facebook’s potential in an opinion piece yesterday under the headline, “China not an easy market for Facebook.”

~Posted by Horiwood.Com, Hollywood California USA. 12.28.10~



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