China: Google Inc. is studying Chinese rules implemented in May 2010 that require online map services to obtain a government permit in order to understand their impact on the company’s map products in China, according to Kate Hurowitz, a spokeswoman for Google. Google Inc. The company has also applied for a license to provide online maps in China.
China’s State Bureau of Surveying and Mapping had said in May that companies operating online map services must obtain a permit. The maps must reflect government policy on disputed territories and remove military-related addresses, according to a story in the Wall Street Journal. As online maps must reflect government policy on disputed territories and remove military-related addresses, Google may have difficulty complying because it allows users to post notes on online maps, the Journal said.
In March, Google stopped following Chinese requirements to self-censor Web searches by redirecting mainland users to its Hong Kong site, which delivers results that aren’t subject to Chinese government censorship. The move cost Google share in the world’s most populous Internet market and was called “totally wrong” by the Chinese government.