by CIO Staff

No Tech Firms Show Up at D.C./China Web Censorship Caucus

Jan 31, 20062 mins

Though a Congressional meeting to discuss human rights, China and the Internet is being held in less than two days, several of the world’s most prominent technology companies may not be in attendance, CNET reports.

The show, called the Congressional Human Rights Caucus, will go on but attendees most likely aren’t going to see the likes of Microsoft, Cisco, Google or Yahoo-firms with an interest in attending such a gathering.  Not one of the four firms has committed to sending a representative, a caucus official said.

“We’re definitely not going to see somebody from Cisco and Microsoft,” caucus spokesperson Lynne Weil said.  “We’re obviously hopeful, but with less than 48 hours to go before the event, it’s hard to imagine why we wouldn’t have heard back.”

The hearing Wednesday is an informal gathering so companies cannot be ordered to attend or to testify. Representatives of Cisco said they would not make the meeting but planned to send an employee to a related House Internal Relations Committee hearing in mid-February.  That meeting is under the auspices of said committee and therefore the organizers have the authority to force companies to send representatives and to testify.

-Al Sacco