August 6, 2010
Reports that Google's site in China was again blocked late last week highlights how the media narrative on China "is sometimes skewed", Shaun Rein, managing director at China Market Research Group told CNBC.
"A lot of people criticize China's government for doing things that they're not actually doing," said Rein, and cautioned investors to "dig in deep" to "really understand what's happening in the China market."
Google caused confusion last week when it announced that its China page had been blocked by Beijing, only to admit several hours later that the inability to access the website was likely a technical glitch.
The news is the latest development in the dispute between Google and China, which started earlier this year when Google threatened to pull its operations from the mainland, after the firm took issue with Beijing's censorship of its search engine as well as cyber-terrorism it alleged was raged by Chinese government hackers. But the standoff appeared to have cooled somewhat, when China renewed Google's license in last month, after the internet giant agreed to make some changes to its Chinese website.
While the media should take some of the blame for last week's incident, Rein said, he added that China needs to get better at managing its soft power.
"They do things sometimes that confuses the rest of the world and i think that the government needs to continue to reform, make sure that they bounce internal security issues, with external soft power, because running into problems like Google is something that's only going to make China look bad."
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