Hong Kong's security chief Chris Tang Ping-keung criticized Google for refusing to place China's correct national anthem at the top of its search results, saying Google's refusal claim was unbelievable and represented a clear double-standard.
"It is known to all that as long as you pay Google for ads, you can put the information you want other people to see in a higher position," Tang pointed out on Tuesday, saying that he was incredulous about Google's refusal excuse that search results were generated by an algorithm with no human input and that Hong Kong people would not accept such claim either.
In November, the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) government made solemn representations to Google, asking it to place China's correct national anthem "March of the Volunteers" as the top search term after inputting keywords of "Hong Kong" and "national anthem," rather than the song linked to the social turmoil in Hong Kong in 2019.
Tang said Google's denial of the HKSAR's request is a double standard as it has accepted the order from EU's top court to remove the data from online search results if users can prove it is inaccurate. "Google owns an explanation to people in Hong Kong and the HKSAR will do everything we can to correct the situation," Tang said.
Tang said Hong Kong police were investigating the incident which involved a song associated with the social turmoil in Hong Kong in 2019 being played as Hong Kong's national anthem at the men's final between Hong Kong and South Korea of the second leg of the Asian Rugby Seven Series on November 13.
According to the organizers of the Rugby Sevens tournament in South Korea, they had asked each team to submit recordings of their national anthem beforehand. As they didn't find the file submitted by the Hong Kong team, the staff googled it and downloaded the one at the top of search results.