Chinese Law Prof Blog

Editor: Donald C. Clarke
George Washington University Law School

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Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Banned words

Google has released a feature that allows mainland Chinese users to search for search terms words that will cause their conection to be cut off. The China Digital Times has translated 456 of them. It's like an arms race; netizens search for Zhou Yongkang (the head of the Central Political-Legal Committee and therefore the man in charge of the legal and security apparatus), so that's blocked; then they search for "Master Kang" (康师傅) (because the "kang" character is the same), the brand name of a type of instant noodles, so that's blocked; then they search for "instant noodles" (方便面), so now you can't even search for instant noodles on the Chinese internet. (Don't even get me started on why you can't search for "teletubbies".)

There's a word for this. And it's in the DSM.

http://lawprofessors.typepad.com/china_law_prof_blog/2012/06/banned-words.html

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