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The Indians Are Getting Greedy

The Indian government managed to squeeze out an agreement from RIM a few weeks ago to allow them, like the Saudis and UAEs did, to monitor all Blackberry communication, including and specifically BES traffic, within their country by means of RIM handing out servers for these governments to run themselves which would presumably have all domestic Blackberry BES data routed through them with all the data as visible to them as it would be to a company’s BES administrator. While RIM was putting up a fight about this, they said something along the lines of Well what about Skype and Google?

Well, today the Indian government has set its sights on Skype, Google, Microsoft and Nokia. This is beginning to turn into a free-for-all.

Nokia has already folded, gearing up to give the Indians servers by November 5th. Skype, compared to Google and Microsoft, strikes me as being vulnerable to an ultimatum like this. But Google has demonstrated with the Chinese that not only do they not fold but they can also be the aggressor with large and powerful nations whose demands and apparent hacking attempts to engage in such spying don’t sit well with Google whereas, in that case, Microsoft demonstrated that they’re opportunists or passive beneficiaries more interested in their shareholders than teaming up to take stands on such values.

So if it comes down to an expulsion threat with a deadline to gouge out such a concession from these companies, my money’s on Google standing strong even if that means no longer standing in India.

Doug Simmons