Government reset - Hu's blocked and who's not in the Chinese Politburo

China's top leadership body is the Politburo which has 25 members. Of these, nine make up the Standing Committee which is the Chinese government's most important decision-making group. Seven of the nine are expected to be replaced this year. One of the candidates to fill these vacancies, Bo Xilai, was recently ousted in a scandal. Not surprisingly, much of the reporting on this incident is censored in China. More surprising, perhaps, is that all other members of the Politburo are censored on the Chinese Internet.

The following is a summary of all Politburo members and whether they are censored on Baidu, Google and Wikipedia, searching for their names in Chinese or Pinyin, respectively. Censorship on Baidu is marked in yellow and refers to confirmed self-censorship. Censorship on Google and Wikipedia is marked in red and refers to complete blocking of those pages. You can click on either to get more info on the results, or to test again in real time.

The discrepancy in results between Chinese character searches and searches in Pinyin may shed a little light on who is deemed to be a true danger when it comes to censorship.

 

Politburo Standing Committee

Rank名字, Name百度, Baidu谷歌, Google維基百科, Wikipedia
1胡锦涛baidu: 胡锦涛google: 胡锦涛zh.wikipedia: 胡锦涛
 Hu Jintaobaidu: Hu Jintaogoogle: Hu Jintaoen.wikipedia: Hu Jintao
2吴邦国baidu: 吴邦国google: 吴邦国zh.wikipedia: 吴邦国
 Wu Bangguobaidu: Wu Bangguogoogle: Wu Bangguoen.wikipedia: Wu Bangguo
3温家宝baidu: 温家宝google: 温家宝zh.wikipedia: 温家宝
 Wen Jiabaobaidu: Wen Jiabaogoogle: Wen Jiabaoen.wikipedia: Wen Jiabao
4贾庆林baidu: 贾庆林google: 贾庆林zh.wikipedia: 贾庆林
 Jia Qinglinbaidu: Jia Qinglingoogle: Jia Qinglinen.wikipedia: Jia Qinglin
5李长春baidu: 李长春google: 李长春zh.wikipedia: 李长春
 Li Changchunbaidu: Li Changchungoogle: Li Changchunen.wikipedia: Li Changchun
6习近平baidu: 习近平google: 习近平zh.wikipedia: 习近平
 Xi Jinpingbaidu: Xi Jinpinggoogle: Xi Jinpingen.wikipedia: Xi Jinping
7李克强baidu: 李克强google: 李克强zh.wikipedia: 李克强
 Li Keqiangbaidu: Li Keqianggoogle: Li Keqiangen.wikipedia: Li Keqiang
8贺国强baidu: 贺国强google: 贺国强zh.wikipedia: 贺国强
 He Guoqiangbaidu: He Guoqianggoogle: He Guoqiangen.wikipedia: He Guoqiang
9周永康baidu: 周永康google: 周永康zh.wikipedia: 周永康
 Zhou Yongkangbaidu: Zhou YongkangTest nowzh.wikipedia: Zhou Yongkang

Other Politburo Members

名字, Name百度, Baidu谷歌, Google維基百科, Wikipedia
薄熙来baidu: 薄熙来google: 薄熙来zh.wikipedia: 薄熙来
Bo Xilaibaidu: Bo Xilaigoogle: Bo Xilaien.wikipedia: Bo Xilai
郭伯雄baidu: 郭伯雄google: 郭伯雄zh.wikipedia: 郭伯雄
Guo Boxiongbaidu: Guo Boxionggoogle: Guo Boxiongen.wikipedia: Guo Boxiong
回良玉baidu: 回良玉google: 回良玉zh.wikipedia: 回良玉
Hui Liangyubaidu: Hui Liangyugoogle: Hui Liangyuen.wikipedia: Hui Liangyu
李源潮baidu: 李源潮google: 李源潮zh.wikipedia: 李源潮
Li Yuanchaobaidu: Li Yuanchaogoogle: Li Yuanchaoen.wikipedia: Li Yuanchao
刘淇baidu: 刘淇google: 刘淇zh.wikipedia: 刘淇
Liu Qibaidu: Liu Qigoogle: Liu Qien.wikipedia: Liu_Qi_(politician)
刘延东baidu: 刘延东google: 刘延东zh.wikipedia: 刘延东
Liu Yandongbaidu: Liu Yandonggoogle: Liu Yandongen.wikipedia: Liu Yandong
刘云山baidu: 刘云山google: 刘云山zh.wikipedia: 刘云山
Liu Yunshanbaidu: Liu Yunshangoogle: Liu Yunshanen.wikipedia: Liu Yunshan
王刚baidu: 王刚google: 王刚zh.wikipedia: 王刚_(政治人物)
Wang Gangbaidu: Wang Ganggoogle: Wang Gangen.wikipedia: Wang_Gang_(politician)
王乐泉baidu: 王乐泉google: 王乐泉zh.wikipedia: 王乐泉
Wang Lequanbaidu: Wang Lequangoogle: Wang Lequanen.wikipedia: Wang Lequan
王岐山baidu: 王岐山google: 王岐山zh.wikipedia: 王岐山
Wang Qishanbaidu: Wang Qishangoogle: Wang Qishanen.wikipedia: Wang Qishan
汪洋baidu: 汪洋google: 汪洋zh.wikipedia: 汪洋
Wang Yangbaidu: Wang Yanggoogle: Wang Yangen.wikipedia: Wang_Yang_(politician)
王兆国baidu: 王兆国google: 王兆国zh.wikipedia: 王兆国
Wang Zhaoguobaidu: Wang Zhaoguogoogle: Wang Zhaoguoen.wikipedia: Wang Zhaoguo
徐才厚baidu: 徐才厚google: 徐才厚zh.wikipedia: 徐才厚
Xu Caihoubaidu: Xu Caihougoogle: Xu Caihouen.wikipedia: Xu Caihou
俞正声baidu: 俞正声google: 俞正声zh.wikipedia: 俞正声
Yu Zhengshengbaidu: Yu Zhengshenggoogle: Yu Zhengshengen.wikipedia: Yu Zhengsheng
张德江baidu: 张德江google: 张德江zh.wikipedia: 张德江
Zhang Dejiangbaidu: Zhang Dejianggoogle: Zhang Dejiangen.wikipedia: Zhang Dejiang
张高丽baidu: 张高丽google: 张高丽zh.wikipedia: 张高丽
Zhang Gaolibaidu: Zhang Gaoligoogle: Zhang Gaolien.wikipedia: Zhang Gaoli

Some results are inconclusive. Here are some possible reasons for this:

  1. There are occasional glitches in the Great Firewall of China. Generally unblocked keywords can sometimes be unaccessible for a range of reasons. Likewise, generally blocked keywords or websites can occassionally be accessible.
  2. A yellow mark for Google or Wikipedia means that the page was very slow to load, not that it was blocked. Foreign websites are generally slow to access from China; some are sometimes or always particilarly slow.
  3. The data may include genuine changes over time. Most of these keywords have only been added to our database for testing recently. But you can click on all of them to view their history and test them again in real time.

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Fri, Sep 04, 2015

GreatFire Q&A with Jimmy Wales on China Censorship

We have been critical of Wikipedia’s approach to censorship in the Middle Kingdom. In a recent piece for the Huffington Post, I lamented the loss of Wikipedia in China. The encyclopedia’s founder, Jimmy Wales, who is also a staunch and public anti-censorship champion, reached out to us on Twitter. Jimmy agreed to publish our unedited exchange on the difficult nature of dealing with censorship in China.

Wed, Aug 26, 2015

Chinese developers forced to delete softwares by police

What happened?

ShawdowSocks

On August 22, an open source project called ShadowSocks was removed from GitHub.

ss.png

According to the project’s author, the police contacted him and asked him to stop working on the tool and to remove all of the code from GitHub.

police.png

He later removed the reference of the police, presumably under the pressure of the police.
edited.png

After the news, many Chinese and foreign developers, as well as ShadowSocks users, paid tribute to the author. As a result of this attention, ShadowSocks became the top trending project on GitHub.

Github.png

 

Wed, Jul 15, 2015

LinkedIn: technological and financial giants; but morally pygmies

When LinkedIn decided to create a China-hosted version of its website in February, 2014, it made a decision to compromise the company's values in the pursuit of the dollar.

It's important to note that before LinkedIn launched LingYing (the local version of the site), LinkedIn was already active in China. By their own account, they had four million registered users (with little marketing effort), a Chinese-language interface and China-based clients who were buying recruitment ads on the platform (the major source of their revenue). The site had been blocked by the authorities for one 24-hour period but otherwise was always accessible.

So why was it necessary for LinkedIn to create a local entity in China? With a local entity the company would be able to issue official receipts in RMB, making it more convenient for local companies to buy advertising on the site. A local entity also makes it easier to secure marketing deals to promote LingYing in China.

But perhaps the biggest appeal in creating a local entity for LinkedIn is that it would be among the few foreign internet companies who could cosy up with Lu Wei and the Cyberspace Administration of China (CAC). Having that kind of a relationship with CAC surely helps the business and those who are associated with the company.

Thu, Jun 18, 2015

We Had Our Arguments, But We Will Miss You Wikipedia

Wikipedia is the latest nail in the internet freedom coffin and it certainly will not be the last. Wikipedia thought that by engaging with China, the authorities would gradually open up. They thought that by allowing the Chinese authorities to censor as much information as they wanted, that eventually they would relinquish control. They thought that for those in China, having access to some Wikipedia pages was better than having access to none.

Sat, Apr 04, 2015

CNNIC censors news about their own statement

On April 1, 2015 Google announced that they will no longer recognize the CNNIC Root and EV (extensive validation) certificate authorities (CAs).

On April 2, 2015 Mozilla concluded that CNNIC’s behaviour in issuing an unconstrained intermediate certificate to another company was ‘egregious practice’ and that Mozilla products would no longer trust any certificate issued by CNNIC’s roots. Mozilla also published a more detailed report about their actions.

After unauthorized digital certificates for several Google domains were exposed by Google and Mozilla on March 23, 2015, CNNIC censored any mention of these posts. CNNIC is not only a certificate authority, they are also China’s online censorship apparatus. CNNIC was, is and will continue to practice internet censorship.

 

News about the April 1 and 2 annoucements has again been censored on social media and also on traditional media in China.

Below is a screenshot of Weibo posts about these announcements.

 

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