Today: Apr 17, 2024

Google sparks backlash from China researchers over retirement of archiving tool.

2 months ago

TLDR:

Google’s retirement of its cache function has drawn criticism from China researchers who heavily rely on it to access censored information. The cache function allowed users to view old versions of web pages, providing transparency and valuable resources for academics and journalists.

In China, where the government censors internet content extensively, the loss of Google’s cache function is a blow to researchers who used it to preserve access to information that may later be removed. The “Great Firewall” restricts access to popular sites, making tools like the cache function crucial in accessing deleted or altered content.

While alternatives like the Wayback Machine exist, Google’s removal of cached links makes it harder to track missing information. The change raises questions about the responsibility of archiving online content and its impact on research methodologies going forward.

Overall, the retirement of Google’s cache function has significant implications for China researchers and highlights the need for robust archiving systems in a digital age.