Linkedin to be shut down in China

On Thursday, Microsoft said it would shut down professional social network LinkedIn in China, citing a “tough operating environment” as Beijing tightens its grip on technology companies.


The US-based company will replace LinkedIn in China with an app dedicated to applying for jobs but without networking features, according to senior vice president of engineering Mohak Shroff.

“Our decision to launch a localized version of LinkedIn in China in February 2014 was driven by our mission to connect the world’s professionals to make them more productive and successful. We recognized that operating a localized version of LinkedIn in China would mean adherence to requirements of the Chinese government on Internet platforms. While we strongly support freedom of expression, we took this approach in order to create value for our members in China and around the world. We also established a clear set of guidelines to follow should we ever need to re-evaluate our localized version of LinkedIn in China.” Shroff said in a blog post.

According to the Wall Street Journal, LinkedIn has been given a deadline by Chinese Internet regulators to better monitor the site’s content.

LinkedIn, launched in China in 2014, allows people to use their personal and professional connections to search for job opportunities.

Chinese authorities have targeted a host of local tech giants for alleged monopolistic practices and active collection of consumer data.

The campaign is part of a broader government policy to tighten its grip on the world’s second-largest economy, including targeting private education, real estate property and casino.

Microsoft will “shut down” the Chinese version of LinkedIn and launch an InJobs app specifically for professionals to connect in the country with companies looking for employees, according to Shroff.
Microsoft bought LinkedIn for just over $26 billion in 2016 and has worked to strengthen its presence in China despite concerns about online censorship.

Facebook and Twitter have been banned in China for more than a decade. Google left the country in 2010 in response to a hacking and censorship attack.

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