Following criticism over censorship and other human rights restrictions in China and other countries, four of the biggest tech companies have sat down with human rights groups and internet freedom activists to hammer out a set of principles on how they should deal with these issues.
Google, Yahoo and Microsoft have all come in for a kicking in the past for what activists see as bowing to pressure from China in particular, over censoring websites and handing over user data to the Chinese government.
However, the companies don’t seem that optimistic about the prospects for their co-operation. One senior executive told the FT that “The fantasy is, we’re all going to say we’re going to stop censorship. The issue is not whether we’re doing this in good faith, the question is, what’s the leverage?”