Search Engines Censored in China
January 2, 2007 8:06am CST
There's been a lot of fuss about this. China's government has committed several crimes and caused many terrible happenings. Now the Chinese dictatorship still censore what Chinese people can see, but in a globalized world, luckily, this gets more and more difficult to accomplish. The most powerful threat to this big memory hole China is imposing to its people surely is the World Wide Web. We're so used to the enourmous, huge freedom that is the Internet, that sometimes we don't realize how important and amazing it is. Well, in the attempt of trying to get a little bit back on Earth, look at this example:http://blog.searchenginewatch.com/blog/img/060131-china.gif On the left you can see what will show up if you search for "tiananmen" on Google.com (International version of Google). On the right you can see what will show up if you search for the same word on Google.cn (Chinese censored version of Google). Many critics pointed their fingers toward Google for having accepted this compromise, but the truth is Google just had no choice in that matter and had to do what any other search engine was obliged to do. The only difference is Google restrict itself to censorship, while I've read a Chinese citizen will have to spend 8 years of his life in jail because Yahoo! gave out details and info about Chinese people searching for "unpleasant" terms right to the China government. The Chinese version of Google is also the only searh engine in China giving advice to people about the fact that it's censored, in fact when you search for some term which will leave out some results, you'll see a disclaimer at the bottom of the page saying that because of local laws and policies some results are not displayed. So, this is the sad truth about a country which is considered part of the civilized world, but that on the inside hides endless problems and issues, and that still, in 2007, has to deal with a dictatorship. These were just my 2 cents... I'm an Italian girl, so I can say I don't really know how it is to be born and still living in a fully censored country because I'm looking at this from the outside... luckily.