Some communications decisions are no-win.  Either way you send a message, you are going to be criticized.  This is the position Apple found itself in with an app being used by Hong Kong protestors.  The mapping software was live-tracking police movements in the territory.  Apple succumbed to pressure from Beijing and pulled the app from circulation.  Apple justified its decision by claiming that “this app violates our guidelines and local laws.”  This will ring hollow to hundreds of thousands protesting the Chinese government’s interference with local affairs.  But, what was Apple to do?  China is its third-largest market.  It was risking a significant loss if it didn’t kowtow.  One could call the decision craven but from an economic point of view, it made sense.  There was no way to wriggle out of a damned-if-you-do-damned-if-you-don’t decision.  Apple chose to protect its business.  It will live with that.

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