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China Begins Monitoring Billions of Text Messages

Soulskill posted more than 4 years ago | from the that-would-be-a-terrible-job dept.

Censorship 178

eldavojohn writes "The Telegraph is reporting that China has begun monitoring 'billions of text messages' in order to increase censorship. However, a People's Daily article claims they only monitor users who have been reported, and only shut down their message service if the complaints are true. Anything considered pornographic will require the user to bring a letter of guarantee to the local public security bureau promising to never again send such messages before service can be reactivated."

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178 comments

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How do they do it? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30791844)

It all looks like Chinese to me.

Re:How do they do it? (1)

buswolley (591500) | more than 4 years ago | (#30791904)

as Popeye once quipped, "This Greek looks Chinese to me."

Anything considered pornographic (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30792042)

Well, that's the last time I send ( o Y o ) to someone in China I guess...

Doesn't this violate the 1st Amendment? (0, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30791868)

I mean, seriously, the "right of speech shall not be infringed", etc...? Am I missing something here?

Re:Doesn't this violate the 1st Amendment? (4, Funny)

Majik Sheff (930627) | more than 4 years ago | (#30791912)

Score:-1, Facepalm

Re:Doesn't this violate the 1st Amendment? (4, Informative)

lorg (578246) | more than 4 years ago | (#30791914)

No. They live in China, they don't have your fancy 1st Amendment.

Re:Doesn't this violate the 1st Amendment? (3, Insightful)

mysidia (191772) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792010)

China and the US both need to upgrade to Constitution v2.0

Remember all those laws the US passed? Communications Decency Act....

With the right party in power (unfortunately), I could see the US having gone down the same path.

There's already much precedent in this area.. think FCC regulations and TV/radio broadcasters, talk shows, etc.

The reason would be the same as usual.... think of the children!

Re:Doesn't this violate the 1st Amendment? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30792060)

That party would be the Democratic party, right? Of the two major parties, it's the one with the long history of violating 1st amendment rights.

Re:Doesn't this violate the 1st Amendment? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30792118)

I guess I forgot that Nixon, who directed the CIA to infiltrate and provoke antiwar groups, was a Democrat.

Or were you referring to the rightwing whine about how not letting judges put up the 10 Commandments in their courtroom is "violating their rights"? If you think that's repressive, try the same schtick in China and see what it gets you.

Well, you actually *won't* see what it gets you, as they apparently execute people with a shot to the back of the head. But you get the idea.

Re:Doesn't this violate the 1st Amendment? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30792972)

Yes, because [SARCASM]the Dems have openly embraced the radical right wing Christians who are clamoring for religion to be taught in schools, creationism, putting the 10 commandments in city parks and buildings, removing abortion rights, stripping gay rights, preventing husbands from disconnecting their vegetable wives from life support, etc, etc, ad-nauseum.[/SARCASM]

Troll harder.

Re:Doesn't this violate the 1st Amendment? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30792126)

not quite.
google it. turns out they do have freedom of speech, they just dont follow it. much like ours?

US 1st amendment corresponds to their Article 35 (4, Informative)

tepples (727027) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792620)

No. They live in China, they don't have your fancy 1st Amendment.

You're right. All citizens of China have is Article 35 [peopledaily.com.cn] , translated: "Citizens of the People's Republic of China enjoy freedom of speech, of the press, of assembly, of association, of procession and of demonstration."

Re:US 1st amendment corresponds to their Article 3 (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30792808)

Complete freedom to do it, and enjoy the consequences before, during and (if conscious) after!

Re:Doesn't this violate the 1st Amendment? (1)

nate nice (672391) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792088)

+1, totally awesome!

Monitoring is universal (4, Informative)

Kanel (1105463) | more than 4 years ago | (#30791870)

private text messages are being recorded in the US as well, by the government and possibly private enterprises too. Recall the text messages sent on 9/11, which was posted anonymously on wikileaks.org. The only difference between the west and china is that they act upon the monitored data more extensively, the breach of privacy is the same.

Re:Monitoring is universal (4, Informative)

maxume (22995) | more than 4 years ago | (#30791932)

Those were pager messages, not SMS messages (the way pagers work, any dude with some equipment can listen to *everything*; the way SMS works, only the phone company can listen (well, and anyone who can order the phone company around)).

Re:Monitoring is universal (3, Interesting)

sakdoctor (1087155) | more than 4 years ago | (#30791998)

Does anyone, in any country use SMS for more than "meet in bar at 7"?
It's 140 characters. It's expensive per tiny unit of information (UK). It spawned a whole degenerate sub language, and it's just about the lamest way that two humans can communicate.

In china it's cheap, but I still wouldn't use it for my revolution planning. Encrypted XMPP/self run multi-protocol gateway (MSN, ICQ etc)/VOIP over 3G FTW.

Re:Monitoring is universal (2, Insightful)

maxume (22995) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792036)

And then bring a letter of guarantee to the local public security bureau promising to never again use encryption before service can be reactivated.

Re:Monitoring is universal (1)

MichaelSmith (789609) | more than 4 years ago | (#30793072)

Whats needed I think is a way to pass very small chunks of encrypted information from point to point in UDP packets. Literally, text messages, but not sent by sms.

Re:Monitoring is universal (5, Informative)

Kanel (1105463) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792064)

The european SMS "culture" appears more widespread and mature than the US one. It has been a killer app since the late 90's, when prices dropped. I recall being surprised around 2002 when talking with US friends and realizing that many of them had cellphones with no SMS capability. "surely your cellphone is broken or something?" I asked.

As for cheap, in parts of Africa there's almost a whole "language" based on the messages you can send just by calling and hanging up before it answears. the time of day or no. of missed calls forms a code that can be transmitted for free.

Re:Monitoring is universal (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30792080)

I think Twitter beats SMS by 2 orders of magnitude.

Re:Monitoring is universal (1)

dunkelfalke (91624) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792192)

It's 160 characters if you use 7 bit ascii. and you can send multipart sms which allows up to 39015 7 bit ascii characters.

Re:Monitoring is universal (2, Interesting)

mdwh2 (535323) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792274)

Does anyone, in any country use SMS for more than "meet in bar at 7"?

Yes.

It's 140 characters.

You still have an ancient phone that limits you to 140 characters? Any phone will automatically split them up for you, and join them at the other end, it's been that way for years.

It's expensive per tiny unit of information (UK).

Yes that sucks, but the key words are per unit of information. The absolute cost is not necessarily expensive, depending on your network/contract/etc. E.g., my texts are 10p each, whilst Internet access is 50p flat rate per day that I use it. The latter is far better value for money per MB, but if I only want to send some texts, a text costs 10p, whilst sending just one email will charge me 50p for that day. (Not to mention that not everyone will have their phones set up to check email, plus it costs the receiver to check email, where as receiving texts is free - so in practice emails are not a valid replacement for texts.)

It spawned a whole degenerate sub language

So did the Internet, but that doesn't make the technology bad. If you limit your choices by what some other people do with it, that's rather poor decision making.

and it's just about the lamest way that two humans can communicate.

Does it come above or below talking via Slashdot, as you and I do now, on the lame-ness scale?

SMSing the world (1)

tepples (727027) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792568)

Does anyone, in any country use SMS for more than "meet in bar at 7"?
It's 140 characters.

Just ask any Twitter user.

Re:Monitoring is universal (1)

MBGMorden (803437) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792698)

At least in the US, most any person who uses them to any real extent buys an unlimited text plan - the cost is only high if you pay per message.

But yes, I use them to send more complex messsages. Most often it's just to send something to someone who may or may not have time to talk at the moment. Same in reverse - if I'm at work then family and friends know that I might not be able to talk, but if they send a text I'll read it when I get to it.

Re:Monitoring is universal (2, Insightful)

sznupi (719324) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792988)

It's actually a very appropriate, even polite, method of communication in many circumstances. One that doesn't scream at you "ANSWER NOW! I DEMAND TO TALK TO YOU RIGHT NOW!!!"

Re:Monitoring is universal (1)

vampire_baozi (1270720) | more than 4 years ago | (#30793094)

140 characters is a lot in Chinese. While most phones are not limited to so few characters anymore, even if they were, you can cram a lot of information into 140 Chinese characters. Easily enough to plan riots; the anti-Japanese riots several years back were orchestrated and planned almost exclusively over SMS.

But in the us you don't go to jail for religion th (3, Interesting)

Joe The Dragon (967727) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792022)

But in the us you don't go to jail for being a part of the religion that is not the one the sate forces you to be in.

Re:But in the us you don't go to jail for religion (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30792150)

I'm honestly not so sure about that. Try being a muslim in texas and stand anywhere near a crime scene ... (un)Surprisingly *you* will be the one picked up by the cop, out of a dozen people there.

Re:Monitoring is universal (1)

mysidia (191772) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792066)

Indeed. Monitoring us universal.

But censorship (currently) is unique.

It's probably just that the US hasn't caught up yet. In a 5-6 I wouldn't be too surprised to see an extension of FCC regulations to include bad language in SMS as well as over the air.

Need a new 'communications decency act' first though. One that's worded to avoid being struck down by the courts.

Government protest? (1)

GiveBenADollar (1722738) | more than 4 years ago | (#30791880)

"Anything considered pornographic will require the user to bring a letter of guarantee to the local public security bureau promising to never again send such messages before service can be reactivated." So what has to happen to get your service back if you protest the government?

Re:Government protest? (5, Funny)

stoat (125788) | more than 4 years ago | (#30791918)

It's a similar procedure, but when you go down to the local public security bureau with your letter of guarantee they shoot you in the head and harvest your organs.

Re:Government protest? (1)

mysidia (191772) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792044)

No... China's civilized now.

I'm sure they send you to a "rehabilitation" camp.

Where you will undergo treatment... possibly Electro-shock therapy, if the condition is serious enough.

Although China stopped/banned use of ECT for use with internet addiction.

More serious disorders such as discontent with government, may require more radical treatments, such as the previous, and including various age-old techniques used to re-program confused/distorted people, so they can properly re-integrate with society, and properly love their government.

Re:Government protest? (2, Informative)

Psyborgue (699890) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792162)

No. ECT and all that does not work as well as traditional thought reform. Brainwashing, done properly, is a process almost completely devoid of physical coercion... Here's a chapter from a book on the topic (Brainwashing in China) [rickross.com] . Interestingly enough, the structure of Chinese thought reform is more or less identical to that used by many cults (which isn't to imply a causal relationship... similar structures can form in parallel). Also, the term brainwashing was first coined by the Chinese [wikipedia.org] .

Evil. (4, Insightful)

headkase (533448) | more than 4 years ago | (#30791908)

Ok, exactly how Evil is the Chinese government? I'm all for trade with them because it keeps our relationship stable so we don't actually start killing each other but my opinion of their government style is that it has to go. Their government is Evil from my value system and I would love to see the Chinese people do something about that. Hell, I would even provide material support electronically but I wouldn't go there.

Re:Evil. (0, Troll)

Jurily (900488) | more than 4 years ago | (#30791942)

Their government is Evil from my value system and I would love to see the Chinese people do something about that.

Two words: Bush. Re-elected.

Re:Evil. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30791966)

Your comment is a complete non-sequitur and bears absolutely no relationship to GP's post whatsoever.

Re:Evil. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30791980)

Three words: Go fuck yourself.

Re:Evil. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30792016)

I find the US (my unfortunately...) government is Evil from my value system and I would love to see more Americans do something about that. Which is why I didn't vote for Bush in either of the elections.

Re:Evil. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30792148)

You value the heavy taxes, socialism and broken promises (close gitmo, open govt't, etc) to Bush?

Wow, you're Evil in my opinion too.

Yes! China *SHOULD* elect Bush! (1)

headkase (533448) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792214)

China elect Bush? Well, it would massively drive up their debt for no real return.. So yeah! Gives us an advantage! ;)

Re:Evil. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30792290)

No, more like Bush. Re-elected. Infinitely.

Re:Evil. (0, Flamebait)

lorg (578246) | more than 4 years ago | (#30791994)

"Evil" is highly subjective. Are they really that evil? They, as far as I can tell, are just not that sneaky about it. They don't seem as preoccupied with not getting caught as our politicos are. So they just do it and then put out the usual lines; "protecting the public" "morality of the people" "think of the children" etc etc. Pretty much the same reasons we get to hear whenever one of our governments do something.

I'm fairly sure we can see thru this bullsh*t just as the billion chinese can. What I find interesting tho is that our governments keep pointing the chinese for being "evil" as a sort of diversion tactic (as in BE HAPPY YOU DONT LIVE THERE! ... ). Perhaps they do the same, I never really bothered to check.

Re:Evil. (2)

wizardforce (1005805) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792068)

Censorship is always evil. It doesn't matter whether they're trying to hide the fact that they're censoring communications or not. Further, while most western countries have nutters that scream for censorship, very few have actually taken the steps to create anything within an order magnitude of the great firewall. Even Australia's blacklist is no where near the scale that China's censorship program is.

Run over with a tank subjective? (2, Insightful)

headkase (533448) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792180)

I believe that in the worst part of the USA you have about equal actual rights as the best part of China. Different worlds, most of the time I bet its ok to live in China but for the times when you piss someone off in power I'd much rather live in the USA.

Re:Run over with a tank subjective? (1)

lorg (578246) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792412)

Find a large square in the capital, occupy it with thousands (possibly hundreds of thousands) of people for a few weeks and you don't think the government will clear it? They probably wont run you over with a tank cause they don't fancy that making the news, on the other hand I don't really think their plan was to run people over with tanks either it sort of just happened to play out that way.

But if the government is, fearing, loosing control (communist dictarorships falling like dominos in the late 80's) they are most likely going to do whatever it takes to uphold order and regain control of the situation.

I think I could live in China, I'd adapt. You learn what to do and say and live with it. The wonder of being human.

Re:Run over with a tank subjective? (1)

khallow (566160) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792480)

Find a large square in the capital, occupy it with thousands (possibly hundreds of thousands) of people for a few weeks and you don't think the government will clear it?

Which government are you referring to? Sure the Chinese one would. Don't know about other countries though. Some have a history of letting that sort of thing slide for a while.

Funny, they feel EXACTLY the same way (1)

SmallFurryCreature (593017) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792662)

But of course, you are right, and they are wrong. Funny that, they also think EXACTLY the same thing.

Evil? Try arrogant (1)

MasaMuneCyrus (779918) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792898)

The PRC is no farther up the evil scale than many other governments in the world, but they have more power to utilize their evil.

On the arrogance scale however, China probably holds a 10 out of 10.

Why does China dislike porn so much? (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30791916)

Where does the fear of pornography originate from in China?

This is easy to answer in the western world and other regions following an Abrahamic Religion. And trough Colonialism a lot of the then-present sentiment was exported and influences e.g. India to the present day.

But China was never under colonial rule per se, they were just being pushed around by the West. Still they look like 19th century Victorian prudes.

Also, the sex drive one of the stronger drives, people might get pissed (especially those 20+ million "excess" males that are around by selectively aborting female foetuses) at porn censorship much easier than than at political censorship.

Re:Why does China dislike porn so much? (3, Insightful)

Psyborgue (699890) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792032)

When people are willing to give up sovereignty of their sex lives, they'll give up pretty much anything. That is why the emphasis is there. It's not like the state gives a shit about what people do with their naughty bits. It's just a test to make sure people comply with the absurd. Those who resist are likely to be troublemakers elsewhere.

Re:Why does China dislike porn so much? (1)

nih (411096) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792092)

heh, he said 'naughty bits'

Re:Why does China dislike porn so much? (1)

lorg (578246) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792084)

I don't belive this is a religious hickup in anyway. There isn't really anything (or much of anything) in eastern philosophy that have our (abrahamic) sexual hickups. I think it's a relic from the communist past and the cultural revolution.

Everyone should be equal etc etc. So women shouldn't be "sex objects" but instead the same as the men - workers. So in uniform and reading maos little red while not out plowing the fields instead of thinking naughty subversive thoughts.

I could be totally wrong tho. They probably just keep it up now for the sake of "morality", a foundation that is probably starting to crack and crumble.

Re:Why does China dislike porn so much? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30792324)

Or "pornography" is a convenient label for anything the government wishes to censor.

Re:Why does China dislike porn so much? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30792376)

That's easy. They know they will never be able to rule the world effectively if their most talented people spend most of their lives jerking off in mom's basement.

Don't think so evil (2)

SmallFurryCreature (593017) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792918)

Governments are rarely evil, in real life they are misguided trying to do what they think is the right thing but going about it wrong.

Terry Pratchett's "May you life in intresting times" touches on it briefly. A rebellion is forming in the counterweight continent (china) seeking to overthrow the government and liberate the peasants... and who will then lead those peasants? The leaders of the rebellion, who will for the greater good of the peasants tell the peasants how to lead their life, how to farm, despite those peasants have hundreds of years more experience with farming.

Leaders have a plan for the future, they see it not working, human nature then tries to find something that is wrong without looking at the plan itself. China needs it people to work hard, without demanding more then can be given, and do so effeciently and properly within the limits of society and available resources. This is all perfectly sensible and reasonable. Take the one-child policy. Westerners often critize it, but what else are China leaders supposed to do? Have the population explode? Invade other countries to be able to feed its out of control population? Allow mass starvation? The one-child police, with all its problems is the only workable solution. But it only works if everyone follows it, to many exceptions and things break down and you MUST control it. What happens if you do NOT control your people is clear, look at the US where the average citizen consumes 9 times the average amount of a world citizen. People starve because americans binge eat (europeans do the same but slightly less). The US has the resources to have this happen, China does not.

And when you got a plan and are convinced the plan is right and the people don't follow your plan, you start looking for reasons. Any reason. Maybe they are being subverted by hostile agents (the examples are countless. Recently shown in Iran but of course the famous McCarthy witch hunts in the US are very much the same. Later anti-vietnam protests could only have been organized by communist agents, free will of the people? Only when they do what you want them to do, the Chinese ain't unique at all).

Sex, sex is just one of those things where people are very disruptive, almost no idea about sexual activity held by the ruling elite is correct. 30+% of children are not of the father that thinks he is the father. The fast majority of teenage girls got an STD... these are not the figures you want when you are plotting the future of your country.

Sex, drugs and Rock&Roll are the enemy of the planners all over the world. Every leader who has had a vision for the future has sought to control them. And in a way, you got to. Take again, the one-child policy. Would be a far greater problem with rampant teenage pregnancy. Women who have children by multiple fathers are a problem in a one-child culture. Would you marry a woman who already has a kid if she is not allowed to have yours?

This is why a clamp down on sex and drugs and music is always a part of a government that has a plan for its population. Check history (and don't forget to check your own) and you will this is true.

And history has also shown that there is precious little opposition to it.

Else, why did the US not rebel after nipple-gate? You are probably an American, protesting about censorship in a country where the word "fuck" is not just bleeped out, but a mosaic put over the mouth of the person who said it. Why does the US government fear porn?

It has nothing to do with decency of puritanism, it has to do with the idea that it is corrupting/influencing the population away from the destiny you have planned for them.

China is undergoing great changes, and the government seeks and needs control to keep it all together. Don't forget that China KNOWS its own history. Almost conquered by the Japanese a tiny primitive nation that was so insignificant that it never developed its own language. 2000+ years it was nothing and then it almost steam rolled over them. The americans did the same and the brits before it. All nothing nations whose ancestors had been eating rocks when the Chinese empire was old. And why? Oh lots of reason including rigid government control stiffling all innovation. But you probbaly won't advance far in government by stating that.

China needs control (single child policy remains the perfect example of this) and control begins and ends with mans basic needs. Sex, drugs and rock&roll. Control that, and you control the rest and keep evil foreign influences out.

Does it work? Well, they are still there, aren't they?

Re:Why does China dislike porn so much? (1)

MichaelSmith (789609) | more than 4 years ago | (#30793090)

Where does the fear of pornography originate from in China?

Come on, the fear is the same everywhere, even if the response is different.

Unfortunate (1)

blee37 (1181835) | more than 4 years ago | (#30791944)

It's unfortunate that the Chinese government continues to spy on the population. Many text messages that people send are quite personal.

Text message technology actually makes it easier to spy on people because you can just filter for words like "democracy" rather than actually having to pay an operator to listen to people's phone conversations. Many human rights activists in China had previously reported having their phones tapped.

America has been doing this for 15 years now (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30791950)

about friggin time.

The answer is that (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30791952)

this really has nothing to do with porn. That's the cover story to provide justification to start seaching the people's messages. Make it sound like the government's protecting morality, when in reality it's another crackdown on dissenters and anyone who doesn't fall in line.

Really? This is designed to increase censorship? (2, Insightful)

SterlingSylver (1122973) | more than 4 years ago | (#30791978)

The Chinese government is clearly fixed upon the value of censorship. Censorship is what they're trying to promote, clearly. Cutting naughty or unacceptable words out of daily conversation is their endgame. They're certainly not monitoring billions of texts messages to identify and locate dissidents, increase their understanding of social networks that may work against them, or to increase their control over their citizens. Censorship is totally what they're after.

Self censorship and conservative thought (4, Insightful)

Colin Smith (2679) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792202)

Cutting naughty or unacceptable words out of daily conversation is their endgame.

Look. What they are doing is persuading people to censor themselves, and to think conservatively. The endgame is behaviour modification.

You don't actually have to read every message. You simply tell people that everything they write or say is monitored.

It's literally FUD.

   

Re:Self censorship and conservative thought (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30792750)

+1 Insightful, if I had mod points.

Re:Self censorship and conservative thought (2, Insightful)

rmushkatblat (1690080) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792806)

Woosh.

They monitor Slashdot (1)

0xC2 (896799) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792004)

The Chinese government requires every Slashdot subscriber to send an official letter of apology, and promise never to read Slashdot again.

Re:They monitor Slashdot (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30792856)

That's interesting. Considering that Slashdot apparently does a pretty good job of stamping out opinions it doesn't like on its own. Why would a government need to get involved?

Chaff & Flare (1)

pubwvj (1045960) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792012)

A solution is for users to increase the volume.

Context (1)

gmuslera (3436) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792026)

Even focusing in detecting the pornographic, that is heavily dependant on context, specially when you try to say much in few words, Even if a image worth 1000 words you can still misunderstand it (as this soldier found [suntimes.com] )

If they put half their censoring effort into.. (2, Insightful)

gimmebeer (1648629) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792062)

Human rights and the well-being of their population, they probably wouldn't have half the dissent and problems they have now. Which would, in turn, require less effort to police the people and would result in much less of a need to 'control' their population. You cannot completely control a population the size of China's. If you want them to conform you have to win them over.

Pornographics words not to use in SMS while in Chi (5, Funny)

DeltaQH (717204) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792086)

Here are some examples:

Down with CCP
Free Tibet
Free Xinjiang
Rule of law
Down with the Great Firewall
Human rights
Multiparty sytem
Accountability
Melanine
Children crushed by crumbling schools
Forced abortion
Chapter 08
You have nice pecks baby.

Just think of the children!!

Re:Pornographics words not to use in SMS while in (1)

jo42 (227475) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792156)

Don't forget:

No lead paint
No cadmium toys

Re:Pornographics words not to use in SMS while in (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30792384)

I think there is a lot wrong in China (I have never been there), but this lead/cadmium story is making me sick, it's to typical American. It probably went something like this:
American designs crappy toy.
American sends design to china for fabrication, specifications include the crappy plastics, flame retardants and paints to be used.
American importer: we want to pay less. is there anything you can do?
Chinese manufacturer: we could use cheaper lead paint instead...
American importer: Great! that will save at least 0.1 cents per sold item!
American government: Go ahead, if someone finds out about the lead paint we will help blaming it on the Chinese.

Re:Pornographics words not to use in SMS while in (1)

D H NG (779318) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792322)

This should be modded insightful, not funny.

Re:Pornographics words not to use in SMS while in (1)

tepples (727027) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792590)

Down with CCP

What does protesting the practices of the company running Eve Online have to do with anything?

Re:Pornographics words not to use in SMS while in (1)

Jeian (409916) | more than 4 years ago | (#30793056)

Semi-related: I've heard that you can disconnect Chinese WoW users advertising in-game for gold selling services, by whispering "Free Tibet" to them. Don't know if it's true or not.

I wonder how far they can push it (3, Insightful)

Psyborgue (699890) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792090)

before the people revolt and the blood of these assholes runs in the streets. Sadly, i'm leaning towards the believe that the people will probably take it. They know no other way.

Re:I wonder how far they can push it (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30792766)

before the people revolt and the blood of these assholes runs in the streets. Sadly, i'm leaning towards the believe that the people will probably take it. They know no other way.

almost like looking into a mirror isn't it?

Re:I wonder how far they can push it (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30793076)

" the people will probably take it"

The same thing in America, people take anything

Logistics (5, Interesting)

adbge (1693228) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792096)

Ethical concerns aside, it would be extremely interesting to see how censorship on this large of a scale is implemented.

I wonder how effective automated modern systems will be at filtering, and how much of the censorship will have to rely on human employees. Total cost? Effectiveness? Cultural implications?

idk (3, Interesting)

Rick Zeman (15628) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792130)

I think it'd be hard enough for computers to decipher English LOL-speak, much less Chinese.

Sooo, who is going to offer the first hardware encryption in handsets...and how soon would THAT be forbidden?

Re:idk (2, Funny)

mcrbids (148650) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792168)

I guess you haven't received texts from my father - encryption is already here, done in meatspace!

Re:idk (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30792220)

Funny, I was just wondering if they text in Chinese or something else like English. Which got me wondering whether or not their text message are UNICODE or not.

Re:idk (1)

protactin (206817) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792328)

You get 140 bytes of data per SMS, so with the default GSM 7-bit alphabet that gives you 160 characters.

I can't remember how alternative encodings work, but I seem to recall you get about 70 characters when you text with extended character sets, suggesting that it's some sort of UTF-16 like encoding scheme. That number drops if you start doing message concatenation.

English companies will help... (2, Insightful)

MasaMuneCyrus (779918) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792948)

With a project of this scale, and with the wallet and determination of the Chinese government, it's more than likely that an advanced Western IT company is going to be helping out with this monitoring task. They helped out with Iran, after all, which is much more taboo than helping out China.

I'm fascinated ... (4, Interesting)

PPH (736903) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792164)

... by the parallels between the Chinese and American right wingers' war on pornography. I'd think that the Chinese would be more intent on stamping out possible challenges to Communist rule (Falun Gong), independence movements (Tibet) and threats to national security. The American conservative logic is more understandable. The economic conservatives don't care about porn per se (its just another business after all), but in order to assemble a viable voting block, their 'deal with the devil' (the religious right) requires that they adopt their position that every ejaculation must have a name. The Chinese don't suffer from the same political pressures as the GOP does. There's no opposition party espousing sexual freedom that could benefit from the circulation of porn. Sitting at home wanking in front of the computer screen is not an activity around which groups tend to organize.

Although the battle cry of our right wingers has been "Godless Commies", it seems that these two groups share quite a bit of ideology.

Re:I'm fascinated ... (1)

bendodge (998616) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792924)

Have you discovered a method to monitize trolling? Can we subscribe to your newsletter?

Re:I'm fascinated ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30793060)

On what basis do you think this is a troll? Are you by any chance a Chinese Communist?

Western influences (1)

MichaelSmith (789609) | more than 4 years ago | (#30793132)

Porn and freedom are both seen as bad things from outside. The perception is that if you get one you get the other.

my hvrcrft s fll of eels (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30792178)

So what's chinese for "lol @ govt"

Why does china care about porn? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30792200)

Why would a governement like china's care about porn or anything like that?

Re:Why does china care about porn? (1)

dotgain (630123) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792926)

Governments care about anything that lets them exercise control over their population.

Here's the deal. (3, Interesting)

eddy (18759) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792228)

Anyone who doesn't think every SMS in the US (for example) is passed into the NSA is naive beyond belief. The difference is that in the west doing this snooping is still a 'dirty secret', while in china they see value in the people knowing they're monitored. Keeps everything calm. In the west being open about this would have the opposite effect, and we all want everything to remain calm, right? They all do it "for the people" of course.

The EU as a whole isn't there yet, but the infrastructure is coming up as fast as the laws can be pushed through.

Even if your local government quite dislike the idea of Total Interception, they'll still do it because information is the currency in the global military industrial information complex. If moscow will trade you information about Al-Qaeda for information about some chinesee dissident in your country...

Sheesh, nowadays you can't talk about the world we live in without sounding like a friggin nutcase.

Wait for it... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30792260)

Google Voice and other similar sites will be used to create generic SMS accounts that smartphones will then be programmed to send random 140 character junk messages at random intervals just to skew the results and make it more difficult to track individuals sending pornographic texts. We may not have privacy anymore, but what does that really matter when we can just hide in the torrent?

Re:Wait for it... (2, Insightful)

Dogtanian (588974) | more than 4 years ago | (#30793052)

Google Voice and other similar sites will be used to create generic SMS accounts that smartphones will then be programmed to send random 140 character junk messages at random intervals just to skew the results and make it more difficult to track individuals sending pornographic texts. We may not have privacy anymore, but what does that really matter when we can just hide in the torrent?

This causes minor confusion for a short while until someone figures out a fairly straightforward pattern to the artificially-generated messages, manages to filter them out, then goes back to looking at all the *real* SMS messages sent by people under a false sense of security.

It really annoys me how naive and shortsighted the people who propose all these "swamp them with bogus data" schemes are. Even if something works in the short term, the messages have still been recorded and can easily be re-filtered and re-examined (possibly using improved data mining techniques) once the scheme has been identified. Bingo, you've been incriminated on something you sent a couple of years ago when your scheme *wasn't* known about- but it is now.

And, of course, to give lots of people the benefit of the scheme, you've got to be open about it anyway, so unless it's *very* cleverly- and truly randomly- designed, the government- or whoever- is going to know how it works and spot it quite quickly anyway. I can assure you now that some random smartass twonk designing a plugin to Firefox that sends periodic generated queries to Google in an attempt to "hide" someone's browsing probably *isn't* going to cut it.

If you're not bothered about the evidence being incriminating in the medium to long term (e.g. if you're planning on being a suicide bomber), this might not be an issue, but that's not much good for those who want to use SMS to help conduct their lives or run a campaign without government oppression.

Incidentally, watch out in the next few years for all those people who mindlessly put personal data "out there" on the likes of Facebook having this come back to bite them. (Even *now*, even *without having logged in*, I could screen-scrape Facebook pages that tell me who's friends with who, and build up a complex picture of social networks if I was willing to program an app to do that). This is going to be a major "shit hits the fan" type thing if future governments are as pathologically obsessed with violating people's privacy in the way that current ones are, and even those who think they're being clever now (see above) may well get a shock.

Can we get everyone in China with a phone to... (1)

kawabago (551139) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792262)

Can we get everyone in China with a phone to text the word FREEDOM to everyone they know just to bug the eavesdroppers? Personally, given a choice between the government reading all my electronic communication versus occasionally encountering porn, I'm sure I would choose porn. It must be horrible to be part of the government of China and be so afraid of your own people.

Anyone got a chinese phone book? (0)

gimmebeer (1648629) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792470)

Let's txt some pr0n to some mayors and gov't officials to see what happens...

open security (1)

MrBrainport (1637275) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792786)

I prefer open security practices instead of warrantless, and if you're tapping information...just do it discreetly and prevent abuse of personal information

THIS IS AN OUTRAGE! (1)

Chysn (898420) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792890)

I can't believe it! I'm so ticked off about this I could... oh, wait... only people that have "been reported?" Okay, then.

Re:THIS IS AN OUTRAGE! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30793042)

Luckily, the Chinese government, just like the American government, has a long track record of being honest about how it monitors its citizens. But once they do something to lose that trust. Watch out.

theres a good side... (1)

pyrote (151588) | more than 4 years ago | (#30793036)

There is a good side, now the hackers that attacked google will be busy sifting through billions of texts saying,
"DOOD, too much rice-wine! just had sex with a goat! gonna hurl..."

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