Sunday, November 4, 2007

Microsoft Censorship Lessons

"Microsoft Censorship" is the title of one of my lesson sets. Its about internet companies who are helping China censor the internet.

Microsoft, Yahoo, and Google all censor results in China. If you do a search for "democracy" or "Tibet" or "Falun Gong" in China, you will not get honest and accurate results about these topics. Most websites related to these topics are blocked.

In other words, these companies are assisting a totalitarian government that squashes democracy, murders protesters, tortures political prisoners, and strongly censors free speech. As such, these companies are, in my mind, active human rights abusers.

This issue, and the issue of human rights in general, is very important to me. The Effortless English Club actively supports human rights organizations such as Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch. We strongly support freedom of speech, freedom of religion, and freedom of assembly. We believe these are universal human rights.

We also believe that businesses should actively support human rights instead of helping governments murder, imprison, and intimidate people. These internet companies are just a small example.... all over the world, companies are profiting by partnering with brutal governments.

This is happening here in the USA as well-- where AT&T is helping the US government spy on their customers' phone conversations and emails. Many people seem willing to do anything to make money.

That, to my mind, is a crime. In our own small way, I hope Effortless English can be a counter-example-- a company that supports human rights, ecology, and sustainable economics.

The "Microsoft Censorship" lesson set is my first small attempt to help-- by increasing awareness of what's happening and by talking about universal human rights.

Of course, this is also a great lesson set-- with a powerful Listen & Answer Mini-Story Lesson, great vocabulary, and, of course, a REAL English text & audio article.

Listen To This Article at:
The Effortless English Podcast.

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