México & Canada Get A+ in Google Transparency Report

Good news for my adoptive country, Canada (see details below) & ¡Muy buenas noticias para mi país natal, México!

Earth & the Moon image taken from www.opefs.com

I found out yesterday (via The Daily Planet program of the Discovery channel) that Google has published a Transparency Report. In this report, Google informs the public of the number of requests government agencies have made to them to either remove content from their services or to provide information about users of their services and products. It was so good to find out that Canadian government agencies have only made these types of requests to Google less than 10 times during the first six months of 2010. As I wanted to find out more information on this topic and see how other countries, including Mexico, were doing, I was so happy and relieved to learn that Mexico, like Canada, has also only made this request LESS THAN 10 TIMES.

Just as a point of comparison on the significance of this number (<10), Google reports that the U.S.A. has asked this 4,287 times! That was really unexpected (at least for me). Now, regarding China, there is not even ANY number that can be reported, as they consider this statistic a "state secret" (not very surprising there). The next countries that follow the USA in the number of requests were Brazil, with 2,435 petitions, while the U.K. and India came very close to each other with approximately 1,400 requests. For the complete world map and the corresponding figures, Google has a chart where it shows the breakdown for each country. If you are interested in censorship and freedom of information, this could be a very good resource for getting a global view.

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