China’s internet companies once had enjoyed a period of unchecked growth. They relished in their quick success, plowing through legal and social boundaries with little regard to the damage they were doing. Wang Lin, a writer for the Ran Caijing finance blog, provides a detailed description of modern technologies’ negative impact on both individuals and society as a whole. He explains how increased regulations and public pressure are beginning to steer tech companies in the right direction.
Since the turn of the 21st century, China’s technological leap has brought tremendous economic benefits to the Chinese.
In the past 20 years, China’s loose regulations on businesses have fueled innovation and technological development, which gave birth to tech companies with global presence, including Baidu, Alibaba, Tencent and ByteDance. While these companies create economic benefits, convenience and pleasure, they can also have a negative impact on people.
To maximize profits, Chinese internet companies often use their technologies in morally compromised ways.
Much of search engine Baidu’s profits came from ads. To maximize these profits, the company listed search results based on who spent the most on advertising. Baidu’s practices had serious consequences. In one case, a 22-year-old cancer patient died after undergoing an experimental cancer treatment he found listed high in Baidu’s search results. The treatment was unsafe and administered by a questionable hospital. The patient had mistaken a Baidu ad for medically reliable information.
Chinese companies that collect big data are allowed...