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Tuesday, March 2, 2010

How to Check If Google China Still Self-Censors

On January 12th, Google said they “are no longer willing to continue censoring our results on, and so over the next few weeks we will be discussing with the Chinese government the basis on which we could operate an unfiltered search engine within the law, if at all.”

To check whether Google China really stopped censoring, you can try this test: enter human rights into, and scroll down to the bottom. Do you see the following?

This translates to “According to local laws, regulations and policies, some search results are not shown.” If you do see this message, you will know Google still follows the censorship order. If you do not see this message, then you will have to conduct further testing of related terms, because result shuffles do happen independent of manual tweaks. Try various other keywords to see if the phrase in italics still pops up.

(And yes, at the moment still self-censors.)


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