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Watching China’s Sina Weibo Watchers

November 19, 2013

As China gets more proficient in censoring the media and controlling opinion overseas (see the November 18 posting on this blog) China-watchers from ProPublica have put together an interactive feature that allows readers to see and understand what images on Sina Weibo (China’s version of twitter)  is most likely to get censored.

“How Sina Weibo censors its users is as revealing as the content that appears on the site, and for the past five months, we’ve been watching the watchers. We’ve created an interactive feature, launching today, that allows readers to see and understand the images that censors considered too sensitive for Chinese eyes,” said the ProPublica article ‘How to Get Censored on China’s Twitter.’
“‘The Chinese language offers novel evasions, such as substituting characters for those banned with others that have unrelated meanings but sound alike or look similar,’ ProPublica quotes Gary King, a political scientist, as saying in his 2013 studyon Chinese censorship. “For example, a nonsensical phrase such as ‘eye field’ looks similar in Chinese to the characters meaning ‘liberty,'” said ProPublica.
Here is the link.
Dispatches from AFP concerning freedom of information, censorship and news coverage in regions where independent media is under threat.