Yahoo Gives Up Reporter’s E-Mail (Wired News)

12:41 PM Sep. 10, 2005 PT

HANGZHOU, China — Yahoo had to comply with a demand by Chinese authorities to provide information about a personal e-mail of a journalist who was later convicted under state secrecy laws and sentenced to 10 years in prison, the company’s co-founder Jerry Yang said Saturday. Yang, responding to questions during an internet forum in this eastern Chinese resort city, said he could not discuss the details of the case involving Shi Tao, a former writer for the financial publication Contemporary Business News.

Overseas-based human rights groups disclosed days earlier that Yahoo Holdings (Hong Kong), part of Yahoo’s global network, provided e-mail account information that helped lead to Shi’s conviction.

Yahoo earlier defended its move, saying it was obliged to comply with Chinese laws and regulations. The demand for the information was a “legal order” and Yahoo gets such requests from law enforcement agencies all the time, and not just in China, Yang told the forum.

But he added, “I cannot talk about the details of this case.” (more…)