Yahoo Cedes the Day in Dissident Betrayal Lawsuit

15 November 2007

SAN FRANCISCO: Just one week after Congress slammed the internet giant's senior management as "moral pygmies", Yahoo agreed to settle a lawsuit brought against it on behalf of the families of two jailed dissidents.

The action was brought by the World Organization for Human Rights USA, alleging the dissidents - both Chinese journalists - were betrayed by the web portal to the police of the People's Paradise after they demanded identification details - in one case the dissident's email and IP addresses.

Because of Yahoo's craven capitulation to the comrades, one journalist, Shi Tao, was identified, traced and received a ten-year jail sentence for reporting the truth - for which the Chinese authorities have a different word: 'subversion'.

Yahoo undertook to pay the families' legal bills and create a fund to "provide support to other political dissidents and their families." But the Sunnyvale heroes refused to disclose more detailed information on the settlement.

Said Amy O'Meara of Amnesty International USA: "Because this agreement has been kept secret, we can't be sure that Yahoo is taking the commitment to end censorship seriously."

Smarmed Yahoo ceo Jerry Yang in a statement after the case's conclusion: "At Yahoo, we believe in the transformative power of the internet. That's why we are so committed to working to support free expression and privacy around the world."

Data sourced from multiple origins; additional content by WARC staff