LinkedIn ceases operations in China
After certain China-critical journalists were banned from LinkedIn, the company withdrew from the challenging operating environment until full compliance is ensured
Major world economy China is off of LinkedIn, as the company states the compliance requirements were too much. The decision was swiftly made after accounts of US journalists had to be made inaccessible to Chinese users for reporting critically on the country, especially concerning the mass internment camps in Xinjiang, where the Chinese government is accused of genocide against the Uygur minority.
Accounts affected were those of Axios reporter Bethany Allen-Ebrahimian and independent journalists Melissa Chan and Greg Bruno. For Chinese users, any content originating from these accounts will be entirely invisible. LinkedIn had already paused all new member sign-ups in China earlier this year in March to ensure compliance with the Chinese law, however the endeavour with the Western layout was now deemed futile.
LinkedIn is the last major US social media platform to leave China. Facebook, Twitter and Google have been long gone from Chinese desktops as they refused to bow the government’s demands. After being criticized for censorship when staying in the market, Jeff Weiner from LinkedIn explained the company is all about freedom of expression, but that the Chinese LinkedIn was a localized version of the app developed for the law-abiding business community of China. It was mainly used for exporters to connect with clients and partners abroad.
So, is this the final farewell of LinkedIn? Well yes, but actually no. The company has plans for a replacement. A China-exclusive service that will restrict some content to comply with local government demands with a job-board free of any social-media features. Opinions and stories will not be possible to share.
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