Google still evil

Despite an announcement that it has stopped censoring in China, google.com.cn still censored

Correction: A commentor points out that if we search for Tiananmen+Square+massacre instead of just Tiananmen+Square, we get uncensored results. Nonetheless, there is something smelly about that page rank.

Also, google continues to censor right here:  Type “Christianity is” into the search box, and it will drop down the following suggestions

  • wrong
  • a lie
  • bullshit
  • not a religion
  • a cult
  • a joke

Type “Islam is” and see what you get.

Google’s free blogging service yanks politically incorrect blogs, and while its search engine found Climategate web pages, Google participated in the blackout by censoring its suggestion box and counts.  Search results are not obviously censored, but everything else is.

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7 Responses to “Google still evil”

  1. Occupant says:

    Google seems to be singled out for censorship in China. Do an image search in China on Google. Many of the results will hang, or the page will come up blank. Now do the same search on Yahoo Images. Most (but not all) of the problems miraculously disappear. Microsoft’s Bing also seems to be largely immune.

    Perhaps this is they way we can expect Chinese protectionism to develop in the future. Selective regulation.

  2. Matthew says:

    Jim,

    Tiennamen Square Massacre returns uncensored results (and indeed when I started typing, autocomplete suggested “Massacre”. So I think you are seeing the results of Chinese pagerank, not censorship.

  3. Anonymous says:

    You’re doing the Tiannamen query wrong, twice: First because you need to issue it from a Chinese IP to see the effects, and second because Google has announced its intentions to stop censoring, but has not actually done so.

    But you’re right about the auto-suggest self-censorship. There are more results for “Islam is bullshit” and “Islam is wrong” than the corresponding Christianity queries. And yes, blogger’s spam reporting can be abused by people to shut down political blogs they don’t like. This is more because Google doesn’t put much effort into Blogger than that Google actively is trying to suppress politically incorrect blogs.

    Can you give more details about censoring Climategate suggest results?

    • jim says:

      The google and youtube search helper suddenly became disinclined to suggest climategate related searches, and at that the same time the counts for climategate related searches underwent an impossible drop, which mysterious drop came simultaneously with the “climategate is no big deal” campaign.

      One of the most popular and most linked climategate articles disappeared from google search results, though it could be the telegraph putting it on the robot exclusion list, rather than google. It is now showing up, though at a curiously low page rank.

  4. James says:

    It’s now 2012, and Google Suggest has no problem listing search terms for Islam the same way as it does for Christianity.

    On censorship in China, of course Google does it. It uses the same technology that it developed to censor search results in the West – it’s just that if it censors 1,000 pages in the USA, it censors 10,000,000 in China.

    It’s inevitable – any company that operates in country X must do so according to the laws of country X, including its secrecy laws. The demands of the law are less onerous for X = “United States” than for X = “China”, but they are not zero.

    • jim says:

      “Islam is” no longer gets its suggestions censored.

      Climate blogs no longer get their page rank adjusted depending on how sciency they are.

      However, if you use your google identity to post politically incorrect comments on blogs, or post politically incorrect stuff on your google blog, such as dangerously scientific climate data, Google will insist on you giving them a phone number, and freeze all your accounts, including gmail and you tube, holding your data for ransom until you prove your true identity, thus exposing your true identity to reprisals for those politically incorrect postings.

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