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Infographic of the Day: China’s Censors Hate Free Speech and Fun

What, exactly, was Google previously censoring in China?

Yesterday, Google announced that it won’t do the Chinese government’s bidding anymore, and will de-censor its search results on Google.cn. That move was a response to cyber-attacks on Google, apparently aimed at both stealing Google’s technology and hacking the gmail accounts of human rights advocates.

Which raises the question: What, exactly, was Google.cn censoring? What does the Chinese government deem a grave-enough threat? David McCandless has created a nifty summary:

Google Censorship

The censored keywords–highlighted in red–center on human rights abuses and political uprisings, including Buddhism. (The one outlier: The charmingly quaint “Eroticism.”)

But the blocked Web sites are, as often as not, shockingly trivial. Sure, you’ve got nytimes.com. You also have Perez Hilton, College Humor, and Addicting Games.

Media we can understand. But did you realize that censors in China see dumb, Internet fun as such a grave threat? In an odd way, that reveals more about the insecurity of Chinese government than the censoring of Tienanmen Square searches.

[Via Information is Beautiful]

About the author

Cliff is director of product innovation at Fast Company, founding editor of Co.Design, and former design editor at both Fast Company and Wired.



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