First part of your argument WAS what I was saying actually. To do business in a new country, a company has to usually open a new subsidiary and enter incorporation. So in short, the subsidiary has to comply to local laws, while parent company will not need to. The wordings you are choosing make it seem like, Google USA has to comply with laws in China, India, UK, USA etc. all at same time, which is not the case. Google India has to comply with Indian laws, but can ignore the laws and regulations in China, and Google China need not comply with US regulations at all. Different companies even if parent owner is same. Ownership grants the parent control, but the subsidiary still has to comply with local laws (and only local laws). And btw, you forgot the union carbide case I referred to. Dow Chemicals distanced itself from any actions of Union Carbide India. Warren Anderson, CEO of Union Carbide who was in India at time of Bhopal disaster, was arrested and skipped bail, and simply disowned the subsidiary(one wonders if UCIL India was independent entity not owned by UCC USA, what on earth was Warren doing there)... and USA courts/government apparently disagree with your interpretation of Google UK/Google USA example you stated above, and said that UCC USA was not responsible for actions of UCIL India. So there is that. And then again, Indian government actually tried to get Yahoo, Google, Blackberry etc. to allow them to monitor communications. Yahoo USA simply refused on grounds of jurisdiction(Yahoo India had to comply). Basically jurisdiction is something more like an etiquette(come to think of it almost anything international comes down to same, be it laws, treaties, conventions). Most countries try not to overreach and have mutual agreements spoken/unspoken. USA's stance has been that it doesn't gives a crap about such etiquette and tries to claim international jurisdiction wherever it thinks it can get away with it, and keeps quiet where it thinks it will get an ass-kicking and will be forced to eat crow(You don't see it making too much noise in respect to China for example, despite IP violations, currency fixing and human rights violation. RIAA/MPAA have been unable to force US government to take any actual concrete action whatsoever against China regards its lax piracy laws, for example). That is all it boils down to, in the end.