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110 comments

countries (2, Interesting)

heatdeath (217147) | more than 8 years ago | (#14926799)

I find their choice of countries amusing. Are these really the only countries that significantly censor the internet? (Or are these the only ones that google cooperates with?)

Re:countries (2, Funny)

LunaticTippy (872397) | more than 8 years ago | (#14926937)

I'll bet they do something in Soviet Russia.

Re:countries (1)

aichpvee (631243) | more than 8 years ago | (#14927355)

No, in Soviet Russia something does them.

Re:countries (1)

k98sven (324383) | more than 8 years ago | (#14926969)

Are these really the only countries that significantly censor the internet?

No.

(Or are these the only ones that google cooperates with?)

No. AFAIK, the local Googles cooperate with national laws in all their respective countries. However, in terms of pages filtered, I think Germany and France are some of the more restrictive countries in the West, with their anti-Nazi laws.

For instance, some countries ban child pornography (possession, not just dissemination), so that material gets filtered in those countries.

Re:countries (1)

vandon (233276) | more than 8 years ago | (#14927006)

It looks like they're right. The results ARE being censored. The question is, who is being censored or is there a bug in the meta-search engine?

Search for 'democracy'
China: About 309,000,000 results (Fetching first 10 unique)
United States: About 307,000,000 results (Fetching first 10 unique)

Re:countries (1)

Rickler (894262) | more than 8 years ago | (#14927780)

Guess what language they write in over there in China?

There's always the US. (4, Informative)

Valdrax (32670) | more than 8 years ago | (#14927029)

The reason China was singled out is because of their heavy censoring of politically undesireable facts. France and Germany are listed because of anti-Nazi speech laws. Both countries have successfully sued Google to force them to take down such content.

Now, try using this search on Google and scroll to the bottom: scientology site:xenu.net [google.com]

Woo-hoo! Land of the free!

Re:There's always the US. (1)

ocelotbob (173602) | more than 8 years ago | (#14927641)

Can you get me an example of a german search page with censored results? The US page seems to say, "yeah, we can't show /everything/, but here's a link to the takedown page, with all the banned URLs. Enjoy." I'm just curious if the German page is similar, or if it just goes into a black hole.

Re:There's always the US. (1)

slavemowgli (585321) | more than 8 years ago | (#14927792)

It seems that they do give you a notice: see http://www.google.de/search?hl=de&q=stormfront&btn G=Suche&meta= [google.de] , for example.

Re:There's always the US. (1)

ocelotbob (173602) | more than 8 years ago | (#14927941)

This makes me curious if that's the actual takedown notice. The one for Scientology has a lot more information regarding exactly what is being taken down. The one for Stormfront just seems to say, "yeah, we had to remove some content." However, more curiously, the noncensored links seem to have been reordered in the searches. Makes me wonder how google eliminates the links - if they just delist, or if they instruct the spider not to even visit the site; any google insiders have more info?

Re:There's always the US. (1)

Valdrax (32670) | more than 8 years ago | (#14928141)

Sure. Check out this blog post [outer-court.com] about Google censorship of the violent imagery loving sites Ogrish.com and Rotten.com and the white supremacist site Stormfront.org.

I feel that they shouldn't be censored, but I always feel a sort of queasy moral indefensibility about that stance when defending the truly repugnant speech. Even so, slippery slopes and all that.

Re:There's always the US. (2, Insightful)

meringuoid (568297) | more than 8 years ago | (#14928682)

I feel that they shouldn't be censored, but I always feel a sort of queasy moral indefensibility about that stance when defending the truly repugnant speech.

Certainly it's uncomfortable to have to do. Think about it this way: nobody needs a right to free speech to say nice things. Nobody ever went to jail for saying 'Dear me, Fotherington-Thomas, isn't the sky such a lovely blue today?' A right to free speech is only worth having at all if you want to say something that somebody, somewhere, doesn't want you to say; and a right to free speech is only really needed if you want to say something that most people don't want you to say.

Rotten.com is our metaphorical canary. It'll be the first thing to die if we wander into a cloud of poison. Then we'll know we've gone wrong somewhere and had better back up.

Re:There's always the US. (1)

user24 (854467) | more than 8 years ago | (#14928340)

try also: http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&lr=&q=kazaalite &btnG=Search [google.com]

this has been going on since at least 2003. maybe someone should start a website listing those links removed by google* because of DMCA or other censorship issues.

in fact i may do so. please send info to [my /. username]@gmail.com with "dmca" in the subject line. anyone interested in this potential project can also contact me there. Hey, we might even be able to
-----------
the rest of this message has been removed due to a DMCA complaint, pre-emptively recognising the potential legal problems.

Re:There's always the US. (1)

user24 (854467) | more than 8 years ago | (#14928388)

*=and other search engines later, but it's probably best to start with google. especially considering that, eg, yahoo doesn't give similar notices.

Not the Goverments fault. (1)

LWATCDR (28044) | more than 8 years ago | (#14928475)

Sorry but blame google. They took down the links after just a scary letter from a lawyer. No government agency forced them to.

Re:Not the Goverments fault. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14929722)

If you follow the links to the take down noticies it gives all the links in question. Its a pretty interesting way of google complying while still being able to provide the results you want.

Re:Not the Goverments fault. (2, Funny)

10101001 10101001 (732688) | more than 8 years ago | (#14929966)

Yes, silly us for assuming that the government was the one that made copyright and the DMCA. All along, it was really the scientologist who made it and use force to ensure it exists. Stupid us.

Re:There's always the US. (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14928588)

Either google of the operator of http://www.xenu.net/ [xenu.net] is wussing out.

From uscode TITLE 17 > CHAPTER 1 > 107:

"Notwithstanding the provisions of sections 106 and 106A, the fair use of a copyrighted work, including such use by reproduction in copies or phonorecords or by any other means specified by that section, for purposes such as criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching (including multiple copies for classroom use), scholarship, or research, is not an infringement of copyright."

-- Bold emphisis mine

http://www4.law.cornell.edu/uscode/html/uscode17/u sc_sec_17_00000107----000-.html [cornell.edu]

In short, fair use covers xenu.net as their use of the materials is for the purpose of criticism.

Google may not be the wuss here, when the DMCA take down notice was sent. Xenu.net was supposed to have been notifed and given a chance to get the link restored. If the scientologist didn't bring a law suit within 14 days of the counter notice google would be obligated to restore the link

"[512(g)] If a subscriber provides a proper "counter-notice" claiming that the material does not infringe copyrights, the service provider must then promptly notify the claiming party of the individual's objection. [512(g)(2)] If the copyright owner does not bring a lawsuit in district court within 14 days, the service provider is then required to restore the material to its location on its network. [512(g)(2)(C)]"

Re:There's always the US. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14929584)

Ummm... anybody bother to look at the first site returned before knee-jerk reacting? Seems to me censorship isn't that bad in the US when the "censored" site is listed number one on the result list.

Re:There's always the US. (1)

Valdrax (32670) | more than 8 years ago | (#14929738)

Seems to me censorship isn't that bad in the US when the "censored" site is listed number one on the result list.

My bad. I forgot that there were acceptable levels of censorship when maintaining a free society.

Re:countries (1)

kwench (539630) | more than 8 years ago | (#14927560)

These countries are officially censoring something.

The German constitution for example does say that "there is no censorship, but..." and then there are some exceptions.

The US, on the other hand, are censoring without anyone knowing it...

Take your pick, but I'd prefer Germany over the US.

Re:countries (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14928612)

Ask Ernst Zundel and David Irving how much freedom of speech Germany has.

Re:countries (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14928933)

Irving was prosecuted in Austria.

Europe needs to commit to human rights (3, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14926848)

Europe needs to recognize that free speech means free speech for everyone, especially the loathsome, or it's going to wind up with a problem soon. What exactly kind of message does it send that racial agitation against arabs is being championed and celebrated as a "we must do this to demonstrate we have freedom of speech" kind of thing-- at the same time that search engines are being censored, and people are being arrested for writing books? It says that being a fascist racist is okay in europe, unless you're the wrong kind of fascist racist.

Is that "European Court of Human Rights" thing just a total paper tiger, or what?

Re:Europe needs to commit to human rights (3, Interesting)

meringuoid (568297) | more than 8 years ago | (#14927426)

racial agitation against arabs ... fascist racist

I assume you're referring to the cartoons of the prophet Mohammed, published in Jylland-Posten, and later circulated in the Middle-East by some imams trying to whip up an artificial controversy?

If so, then I have to ask whether you've actually seen them. Here they are [muhammadcartoons.com] . I can't see anything there that's racist. Some are critical of Jylland-Posten itself, referring to the whole thing as a publicity stunt. Some are critical of militant Islam. One - with the schoolboy, whose name apparently happens to be Muhammad - seems quite optimistic about integration and multicultural coexistence.

The only ones that anyone could conceivably take offence at are the ones criticising Islam or certain sects of Islam. But Islam is not a race, it's a religion, an ideology. Ideologies can never be said to be beyond criticism. Was it racist against Russians to criticise the ideas, the founders, and the results of Communism?

Re:Europe needs to commit to human rights (2, Interesting)

k98sven (324383) | more than 8 years ago | (#14927887)

Europe needs to recognize that free speech means free speech for everyone, especially the loathsome, or it's going to wind up with a problem soon. ...As if a (sub)continent of 25-30 countries with half a billion people can be expected to have homogenous views and legislation on everything.

What exactly kind of message does it send that racial agitation against arabs is being championed and celebrated as a "we must do this to demonstrate we have freedom of speech" kind of thing-- at the same time that search engines are being censored, and people are being arrested for writing books?

Let's see, you're taking the Danish Muhammed drawings controversy, and applying it to the German anti-Nazi laws, despite the fact that Denmark has no such laws? Or are you referring to the German magazines that republished the pictures once the controversy started? Well, that's a good question that you should ask the publishers. But making the assumption that the actions of individual publishers represents prevailing opinion just as well as their consitition does is just ridiculous.

It says that being a fascist racist is okay in europe, unless you're the wrong kind of fascist racist.

You'll be hard-pressed to find any substantial number of people subscribing to that view.

By analogy, the USA has a ban on the import of "any obscene book, pamphlet, paper, writing, advertisement, circular, print, picture, drawing, or other representation, figure, or image on or of paper or other material, or any cast, instrument, or other article which is obscene or immoral" (Title 19 section 1305). But there are plenty of American porno magazines.

So by the same line of reasoning: Americans think that foreign obscenity is bad, but domestic obscenity is okay?

Re:Europe needs to commit to human rights (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14929079)

Let's see, you're taking the Danish Muhammed drawings controversy, and applying it to the German anti-Nazi laws, despite the fact that Denmark has no such laws?

The distinction unfortunately ceases to be important once the EU sets itself up as the arbiter for matters such as human rights, and both Germany and Denmark sign on.

Which has already happened.

Either the continent is unifying or it isn't. You're going to have to pick one. And it looks like #1 is the one being picked right now.

You'll be hard-pressed to find any substantial number of people subscribing to that view.

You are certainly correct.

Unfortunately, there are a nonzero number of people whose views can be farily described in that way, and while their numbers are non-substantial, they talk quite loudly. And they're easy to find; just read their blogs.

So by the same line of reasoning: Americans think that foreign obscenity is bad, but domestic obscenity is okay?

Irrelivant. America behaving badly in no way justifies Europe to do the same.

Re:Europe needs to commit to human rights (1)

marco13185 (888912) | more than 8 years ago | (#14929484)

Actually, holocaust revisionism and denial is illegal in the entire EU. It is the "downplay of a human genocide". The question isn't whether the holocaust happened, that's irrelevant. The more important issue is natural rights. The EU has basically created thought-crime, the worst violation of fundamental human rights.

A lot of people don't agree with Section 1305, not to mention that it's rarely, if ever enforced. While on the other hand, a holocaust denier got sentenced to 6+ years in prison for a book he wrote denying the holocaust. You can't create laws to support a certain view of the truth, governments cannot impose laws on historians. Because in the end, history will ALWAYS win, however slowly or painfully, as we have seen in the course of human events.

And the fact that the UN has not condemned the EU for these actions is beyond me. It seems the the United States is the only place in the world where our rights are so valued. But even here, people take these great rights for granted. They don't realize that in other parts of the world, speaking against the government will get you shot. And people have allowed courts and congress to censor us.

Some people seriously need rude awakenings, among them: the EU, Germany (where the Nazi party is banned), France, China (which needs something more closely resembling a revolution), and ignorant americans.

See, while I for instance disagree with most people that criticize our current president (I do have my own complaints) I think that the right to do so is extremely important. A government that imposes beliefs or bans certain viewpoints is just one step closer to dictatorship.

Re:Europe needs to commit to human rights (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14928029)

Well, actually, in many European countries, they don't HAVE any freedom of speech guaranteed in their constitution. And most outright ban, and will even arrest you for saying 'Hitler was really good. Hitler didn't kill Jews. He only killed criminals after a due process!'

Though my rights here in America seem to disappear daily, I'm still glad that I can very much legally say that Hitler was super-nice and friendly. (Or, if you're Canadian, you can't legally say: 'Black people are stupid')

Just do this... (4, Funny)

DarkNemesis618 (908703) | more than 8 years ago | (#14926853)

Just misspell what you're looking for...worked for the Chinese...

Re:Just do this... (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14927063)

Just misspell what you're looking for...worked for the Chinese...

This is your chance, Taco. You could be one of the great freedom fighters of the information age.

Re:Just do this... (2, Funny)

dw09577 (933167) | more than 8 years ago | (#14927098)

I think most people have been doing this for years...

Did you mean Britney Spears?

Re:Just do this... (2, Funny)

hunterx11 (778171) | more than 8 years ago | (#14927182)

Re:Just do this... (1)

dw09577 (933167) | more than 8 years ago | (#14927904)

my point exaxetcahaly.

"Plastic flower pot" == ??? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14928999)

So is that why that Accuma search engine covered the other day says that the 8th most popular search by the Chinese is "plastic flower pot"?

I can only wonder what /that/ is a code for...

What about free speech restrictions in the US? (2, Insightful)

luvirini (753157) | more than 8 years ago | (#14926857)

Does the thing highlight those also?

Re:What about free speech restrictions in the US? (3, Interesting)

LiquidCoooled (634315) | more than 8 years ago | (#14927002)

Not quite free speech, but does google include DMCA blocks on their sites outside the US?

*Actually, it does.
I just did a search from google.co.uk (for kazaa lite) and got the following:

  In response to a complaint we received under the US Digital Millennium Copyright Act, we have removed 2 result(s) from this page. If you wish, you may read the DMCA complaint that caused the removal(s) at ChillingEffects.org.

Now, since I don't live in America and aren't governed by their rules, why in the hell is that blocked?

Re:What about free speech restrictions in the US? (1)

Fareq (688769) | more than 8 years ago | (#14927431)

probably because the server that holds/held that result is located in the US, or, failing that, because of a bug. Or, failing that, because google didn't try that hard...

Re:What about free speech restrictions in the US? (2, Informative)

BungoMan85 (681447) | more than 8 years ago | (#14927451)

Because google lives in America and it is governed by their rules.

Re:What about free speech restrictions in the US? (1)

Don_dumb (927108) | more than 8 years ago | (#14928297)

Because google lives in America and it is governed by their rules
Who gives a shit where google 'lives'?
the search was done on google.co.uk from (I am assuming) the UK, it should only be obliged to submit to UK laws in that instance, in the same way it feels subject to Chinese laws with their .cn sites.
It seems that google wants to comply with the US DMCA even when it doesn't have to.

That is an editorial decision, I am honestly not sure if that is censorship or not.

Re:What about free speech restrictions in the US? (2, Insightful)

lysergic.acid (845423) | more than 8 years ago | (#14928640)

If that's so then why are Walmart, and Nike, and pretty much all U.S. clothing manufacturers allowed to run sweatshops in other countries that would violate labor laws here in the U.S.?

Re:What about free speech restrictions in the US? (1)

fbjon (692006) | more than 8 years ago | (#14929401)

Interestingly, it's censored on google.cn as well.

Re:What about free speech restrictions in the US? (3, Informative)

Petrushka (815171) | more than 8 years ago | (#14928329)

The response Google sent to me when I complained about their censoring google.co.nz because of US laws:

Thank you for writing to us about the Digital Millennium Copyright Act, also known as the DMCA. Google has an established procedure for handling complaints about alleged copyright infringement, which you can review at http://www.google.com/dmca.html [google.com] . Since Google is an American company, we apply American copyright law to our global properties. Part of our motivation behind this approach is to promote public knowledge and discussion of DMCA notices and removals.

The e-mail continued with general information about the DMCA. They didn't specifically address the .co.nz (or .co.anywhere_else) question.

Google.fr, google.de, and google.cn also censor sites on the basis of the DMCA, in addition to censoring on the basis of local laws.

Re:What about free speech restrictions in the US? (1)

MorderVonAllem (931645) | more than 8 years ago | (#14927050)

Weird...I did a search and had no problem, both from google.com and google.co.uk...

Re:What about free speech restrictions in the US? (1)

darkmonkeh (953919) | more than 8 years ago | (#14927259)

Check the bottom of the page - it says it there :). I'm in the UK and just tried.

Re:What about free speech restrictions in the US? (1)

MorderVonAllem (931645) | more than 8 years ago | (#14927634)

Yeah, I suppose I was looking for Kazaa.com to be taken down as well as the other links to kazaa. Plus I didn't scroll...thanks though, it's very interesting.

What are the free speech restrictions in the U.S.? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14927198)

Why not use the site and check?

What exactly would the free speech restrictions in the U.S. be? The only ones I'm aware of are DMCA restrictions, such as those imposed by the church of scientology's legal harrassment. I tried searching for "scientology" comparing the U.S. to Germany, but the site doesn't work for me. I click the button, nothing happens.

The only case of google censorship in the U.S. I've ever seen demonstrated was on Google Video, which this engine doesn't cover.

Re:What are the free speech restrictions in the U. (1)

meringuoid (568297) | more than 8 years ago | (#14927654)

The only case of google censorship in the U.S. I've ever seen demonstrated was on Google Video, which this engine doesn't cover.

If it's the same one that's been going all around the net as an example of Oh Noes Google r t3h 3vil!!!!1!!!111!! then that's not Google censorship; apparently the person who uploaded it set those restrictions, and Google just honoured them.

After all, some material might be public domain in one country and copyright in another; or it might contain footage from the BBC Creative Archive and thereby be restricted to UK only. Plenty of legitimate reasons why the person uploading something might wish to restrict its distribution.

Re:What about free speech restrictions in the US? (1)

zacronos (937891) | more than 8 years ago | (#14929508)

Yes it does -- you can compare results between China, France, Germany, and the United States.

Try going to the site [indiana.edu] and search for the word peace, telling it to compare the results between the United States and Germany -- there are over twice as many sites returned in Germany than the United States.

Re:What about free speech restrictions in the US? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14929784)

I did it and there was only a 3 million difference (541 million for US, 544 million for Germany).

Did you actually wait for it to finish searching, or did you just assume it was done a second after you clicked search?

Re:What about free speech restrictions in the US? (1)

zacronos (937891) | more than 8 years ago | (#14930233)

Strange, now I'm getting 540 million (not 541 as you did) for the US, though before it was showing only 217 million.

And yes, that was after it finished tallying up its word counts.

Example (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14926876)

Re:Example (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14927055)

Not the best example I think - try the same search using chinese characters.

Re:Example (1)

BungoMan85 (681447) | more than 8 years ago | (#14927495)

I dunno the difference is pretty clear to me. First link: tanks and troops fighting with civilians. Second link: nice buildings and a happy looking tourist couple. But searching in chinese would probably reveal even more of a difference.

Re:Example (1)

Andrew Kismet (955764) | more than 8 years ago | (#14928324)

If you actually do that search on MAIN Google as opposed to images, you can actually find sites that mention the atrocity, ie. they haven't attempted to delete the controversy from history. However, they usually portray the protests in a negative light; still, this doesnt prevent Chen Yong (China's Joe Smith) from forming his own opinion, and the facts may be missing in a few places. Don't forget that Tiennamen Square isn't JUST the site of the controversy as it is here in the west; it's a normal, everyday place for most people. So your 'case study' is somewhat flawed, but it does get your point across.

A Search Result Falling in the Woods... (4, Interesting)

klenwell (960296) | more than 8 years ago | (#14926887)

with no one around... does it exist?

I've always been amused by search result comparisons -- especially when they compare total results since most results beyond the first 1000 (as in the case of Google or Yahoo) are inaccessible.

What's the point, for instance, of Google saying there are 16,000,000 results for your query when they will only show you the first 700? I think this is even true of their API.

Incidentally, if for some reason you need to quickly find the last known google result, there's always http://www.lastgoogle.com/ [lastgoogle.com] .

Re:A Search Result Falling in the Woods... (1)

too_old_to_be_irate (941323) | more than 8 years ago | (#14927543)

Good grief. Just tried http://www.lastgoogle.com/ [lastgoogle.com] with the first word that came into my head - random, with just a hint of personal topicality - 'hunger'. And lo... http://ebony-hunger.shepherd.net/ [shepherd.net]

Truly, Alpha to Omega, and all in between...

Re:A Search Result Falling in the Woods... (1)

nazsco (695026) | more than 8 years ago | (#14928049)

> What's the point, for instance, of Google saying there are 16,000,000 results for your query when they will only show you the first 700? I think this is even true of their API.

The API work on a subset of the full index.

For example: search for "car" on the site. It shows a total of 1,480,000,000

now fire some python code and search for "car" trhu the api

you will get 1/1000 of the site total... or less! as it's change from request to request.

I had code to get the first 100 results, so i did several searchs, for page 1, 2, 3, etc.

when i turned on the code to show the total after each page, there were always 2 or 3 diferent totals in the batch, changing at every 2 or 3 requests.

obviously, if i requested the same query and same page over and over, i would eventualy get a diferent total for that, and with the diferent total, i'd get also diferent results in the page.

Re:A Search Result Falling in the Woods... (1)

$criptah (467422) | more than 8 years ago | (#14930122)

Hi, this is offtopic, but the behavior is similar to many commerical search engines. If your query is too broad, you are getting too many results. The assumption is that if there too many documents, then the query term is not that relevant; therefore, you need to modify the query and reduce the recall. Example: If searching for 'moo' returns you 100,000,000 results, then 'moo' is a common term and chances are that the result #10,000 will never been seen by a user.

Please remember that there is a difference between data retrieval (select * from table) and information retrieval (show local restaurants local to New York area). Thanks,

Silly (3, Interesting)

xnot (824277) | more than 8 years ago | (#14926901)

Messages are always censored to some degree, becauses ultimately, some system has to decide which messages get through. Either that system is a computer that uses some algorithm, or it's a human who manually decides. Usually it's the popular message that gets through, regardless if the message is accurate or not.

Ultimately it comes down to your level of trust in whatever system is doing the filtering. What most people don't get is there's almost always some "non-partial" element to messages. News media can't report on messages that the government deems as critical to national security. And now we are finding the same thing with google. And people are suprised?

Re:Silly (1)

meringuoid (568297) | more than 8 years ago | (#14927550)

News media can't report on messages that the government deems as critical to national security. And now we are finding the same thing with google. And people are suprised?

Sure. The point of the internet is that it's an international resource. Suppose that, say, the son of a cabinet minister has been caught offering to supply an undercover reporter from the Daily Mirror with a small quantity of cannabis. And, continuing this entirely hypothetical situation, let us suppose that the Government has hurriedly set about preventing this story getting out, by legal means.

Now, we expect to be able to go to the foreign media via the internet and find out the truth of what's going on. We do not expect the search engine to come back and say 'Sorry, but your local authorities don't want you to know that. Best to suck it up and learn to love Big Brother.'

try a search on falun gong (2, Informative)

maharg (182366) | more than 8 years ago | (#14926911)

China 69,600 US 3,450,000

children cries falun gong tears unheard unseen

I'd have thought that China wouls be encouraging webpages talking about Falun Gong in such glowing terms. Bizarre.

Strange. (1)

C10H14N2 (640033) | more than 8 years ago | (#14927862)

I did a search on falun gong, first on images, which was interestnig. Then just "web search." Result:

China:
action affected bureau chief china chinese civil cult denouncing education engineer evil experts falun gong gong's hijacking leading movie news ni professor programs radio related report said satellite sept signals special television transmission tv xinhua xinhuanet

United States:
1999 according april article articles body ccp china chinese communist considered crackdown cultivation dafa dharma edit fa falun free gong government health high hongzhi human incident law li million mind new party people persecution police practice practitioners public published qigong religious reports seen state states times torture united wikipedia years ...

WTF?

Re:Strange. (1)

maharg (182366) | more than 8 years ago | (#14928455)

huh ? I just did the search again and got the following for the US, similar to what you got but different again:

1999 a.m abilities article articles assistant beings bodies body buddha circuit consciousness crackdown cultivate cultivation dafa dan edit energy exercises fa heavenly high law level levels li main meridians method methods mind-intent movement one's order passed person person's practice practitioner practitioners public qigong school society supernormal torture universe xinxing york

google results don't differ that much from search to search - something tells me this algorithm is less than deterministic. $DEITY only knows what happened first time round ;o)

Chinese govt and Falun Gong (1)

jdfox (74524) | more than 8 years ago | (#14927886)

> I'd have thought that China wouls be encouraging webpages talking about Falun Gong in such glowing terms. Bizarre.

Actually, the Chinese govt strongly disapproves of Falun Gong, and has been cracking down very hard on it for some time. You can read more about this if you search Google for "chinese government falun gong" [google.com] or "china falun gong" [google.com] etc., as long as you're using Google from outside of China.

The Chinese govt also maintains an official anti-Falun Gong website [china.com.cn] , though it's unreachable from here at the moment. They also have some articles putting their side of the story here [china-embassy.org] .

I'm not too keen on Falun Gong personally, but at least they're not chucking anyone in prison for disagreeing with them.

I'm moving to the free world... (5, Funny)

benjjj (949782) | more than 8 years ago | (#14926918)

China! I got 309,000,000 hits for democracy there, and only 307,000,000 in the US. The only possible explanation is that China is more free than the USA.

Re:I'm moving to the free world... (1)

akgw (896515) | more than 8 years ago | (#14926950)

Even more interesting is the Images search on democracy.

Sample Google Searches: China vs. USA (3, Informative)

digitaldc (879047) | more than 8 years ago | (#14926953)

I did a few sample searches on CENSEARCHIP, here were some of the larger discrepancies and interesting results I found:

----Compare Google results between China and United States:

Censor Chinese Internet
China: About 810,000 results (Fetching first 10 unique) United States: About 7,140,000 results (Fetching first 10 unique)

Censor Chinese
China: About 1,790,000 results (Fetching first 10 unique) United States: About 11,700,000 results (Fetching first 10 unique)

Human Rights
China: About 879,000,000 results (Fetching first 10 unique) United States: About 878,000,000 results (Fetching first 10 unique)

Jack Daniel's
China: About 1,800,000 results (Fetching first 10 unique) United States: About 68,700,000 results (Fetching first 10 unique)

xxx
China: About 108,000,000 results (Fetching first 10 unique) United States: About 107,000,000 results (Fetching first 10 unique)

Re:Sample Google Searches: China vs. USA (1)

AKAImBatman (238306) | more than 8 years ago | (#14926992)

xxx
China: About 108,000,000 results (Fetching first 10 unique) United States: About 107,000,000 results (Fetching first 10 unique)


Well, there goes their boilerplate excuse about "making the web safer" for the Chinese people.

Re:Sample Google Searches: China vs. USA (1)

digitaldc (879047) | more than 8 years ago | (#14927112)

Well, there goes their boilerplate excuse about "making the web safer" for the Chinese people.

Or maybe they are just doing a lot of research on triangulation plotting? ;)

Re:Sample Google Searches: China vs. USA (1)

corsec67 (627446) | more than 8 years ago | (#14927065)

It looks like the USA search for "xxx" is done with safe-search on, because the words it gives are "0 1 2 2002 3 30 acclaim account activity bmx boards cheats comments cyberspace dave features fileplanet game gamecube games gba gcn governance guides icann icann's icannwatch ign info insider michael mirra new news november october pc playstation post posted ps2 ratings review reviews rumors search sports user write xbox ", which look like they are all getting bmx XXX.

Re:Sample Google Searches: China vs. USA (1)

elrous0 (869638) | more than 8 years ago | (#14927335)

Jack Daniel's China: About 1,800,000 results (Fetching first 10 unique) United States: About 68,700,000 results

Jeez, I never realized how grim things really are in China. Life without Jack Daniel's?!? That's just savagery!

-Eric

Re:Sample Google Searches: China vs. USA (2, Interesting)

Eggz Factor (455382) | more than 8 years ago | (#14928142)

Most telling is an image search comparison on Tiananmen Square. China returns pastoral images while UAS returns mostly images tanks and protest.

More to take into account... (5, Informative)

ExE122 (954104) | more than 8 years ago | (#14927073)

While these results are pretty neat, are they taking into account the fact that search AIs have developed differently? The AI refines the results based on what links people commonly follow when results are returned.

A search on Tiananmen Square, for example, results in many text references and images of the Chinese government crackdown on protesters in 1989 on the U.S. search site, but mainly hotel and tourist information on the Chinese version

Case in point. People in China are more likely to want to visit Tiananmen, and therefore would likely click on more links for hotels and tourist attractions. People in the U.s. are less likely to be interested in travelling there, and more likely to look up the history associated with it.

I looked up "Wyoming" in both Chinese and U.S. googles (not using this site, but actually using google with the Chinese translation of Wyoming). The Chinese site brought up a Wiki entry, a site showing history and demographics, and another page showing its famous landmarks... stuff that people in China might be more interested in. The U.S. site brought up the official Wyoming state government website, the official local travel website, and the University of Wyoming website... stuff that people in the U.S. would be more interested in.

Looking further down, the chinese site brings up more about history and international travel, while the U.S. site brings up more about hunting, skiing, local state departments, etc.

I also looked up Tiananmen Square in an image search, and yes, the first couple pages do indeed show nothing of protests. But its not like its completely blocked, the tanks show up a few pages down.

One thing I noticed in doing my own comparisons is that Censearchip is only showing you the first unique differnces. On some simple searches, those differences don't even show up for a couple pages... the results are more or less the same.

Now before everyone goes jumping down my back... I'm not arguing that there's no censorship, because I know its a proven point that there is. And I do think that this site is indeed indicative of that. I just think that there is a possibility that some of these measures aren't completely accurate and that there are other factors involved.

--
"Man Bites Dog
Then Bites Self"

Re:More to take into account... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14927168)

What is your basis for claiming that results are tailored towards those people are most likely to click? Google does not do click-through tracking, so they could only know what pages of results you asked for; nothing about what you clicked.

Re:More to take into account... (2, Informative)

General Wesc (59919) | more than 8 years ago | (#14927242)

Google does do click-through tracking. If you have Personalised Results, it will always track what's clicked. IF you don't, it still tracks on occation. (I don't know how it whether to track or not, but it was doing it from time to time long before they had personalisation.)

Obligatory (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14928380)

What? You mean Wyoming actually exists?

FreeBSD search results (1)

xoundmind (932373) | more than 8 years ago | (#14927154)

China: About 61,400,000 results United States: About 61,200,000 results

In the Global Village the Medium is the Message (1)

Quirk (36086) | more than 8 years ago | (#14927155)

What isn't being seen for the trees is that the forest, for the first time, is visible to everyone on the web. For the first time we can relatively easily peek and poke into one another's cultural biases and make a variety of inter/intra comparisons.

As governments struggle to literally get a grip on the world web, the world web citizenry is building a new hierarchy of cultural cross development.

We can individually and collectively point fingers at one another, but the greater fact is that we have in place a mechcanism that allows us to do so.

Forget China, so called "Free" countries censor (1)

ps3udonym (874835) | more than 8 years ago | (#14927218)

Read the results below and you will see proof of this. Yahoo is obviously far more prone to censor their results then google. A search for Hitler on the German Yahoo search comes up with 109 results. That same search term when typed into an American Yahoo Search comes up with over 80 THOUSAND results. Googles results were identical on that same search.

Forget China and Google, Yahoo is obviously worse and censoring even when there is no legal motive to do so. Worry about what these companies are doing in your OWN back yards.

Peace.

Search Term: Hitler
Search Engine: Yahoo

Germany: About 109 results (Fetching first 12 unique)
United States: About 80,541 results (Fetching first 20 unique)

Search Term: Hitler
Search Engine: Google

Germany: About 48,200,000 results (Fetching first 10 unique)
United States: About 48,200,000 results (Fetching first 10 unique)

Search Term: "Black Ops"
Search Engine: Yahoo

France: About 866,000 results (Fetching first 10 unique)
United States: About 837,000 results (Fetching first 10 unique)

Search Term: "Black Ops"
Search Engine: Google
France: About 890,000 results (Fetching first 10 unique)
United States: About 897,000 results (Fetching first 10 unique)

Looks like if it isn't about China, it is ignored (2, Insightful)

ps3udonym (874835) | more than 8 years ago | (#14928228)

odd that. I notice not two posts above mine that there is an almost identical post, but with results ONLY for China vs. the US. Perhaps we might wish to broaden our horizons a little bit and look at what OTHER data is available and what conclusions can be reached by that? China is China and Google, Yahoo and others are forced to operate with in the bounds of the laws of the land. So if the government of China says censor, the search engines MUST censor or loose access to a market of 2 billion people.

What we should be looking at is censorship where this kind of legal club isn't being held over the heads of companies. It is FAR more indicative of the general level of censorship in search engine results to look at search results from countries with a tradition of "free" speech. The results above are far more interesting. Here we have self censored results that aren't the result of governmental interference. It doesn't help us a bit to go and look for results we already know we will find. I.E. We expect censorship in China, so why are we so surprised when we find it? Here, however, are unexpected results.

Yahoo France came up with 29,000 more hits when searching for the term "Black Ops" than Yahoo US. Would anyone care to debate why this should be so? The same search on Google returns 7,000 MORE hits in the US. Why the massive discrepancy? The discrepancy is FAR greater when searching for more culturally sensitive topics. The first search I did found a discrepancy of 80,432 greater hits on the US Yahoo site then on the German Yahoo site.

I think we have FAR larger issues then censorship of China. Perhaps we should clean up our OWN backyards before going off and hunting garbage in someone else's

Mods, China isn't the only topic here, it CERTAINLY isn't the thrust of the article. Perhaps it would be of value to widen the discussion.

Sheesh!

Re:Forget China, so called "Free" countries censor (1)

scarvill (874536) | more than 8 years ago | (#14929422)

Here are some interesting results from the searches below. Search: Iran Germany: About 394,000,000 results United States: About 393,000,000 results Search: Iran France: About 395,000,000 results United States: About 393,000,000 results Search: Iraq France: About 753,000,000 results United States: About 342,000,000 results Search: Iraq Germany: About 754,000,000 results United States: About 342,000,000 results

Re:Forget China, so called "Free" countries censor (1)

ps3udonym (874835) | more than 8 years ago | (#14930208)

Those are some really intresting results. I think we can discard results in this sample that differ by a million hits only when we are dealing in the hundreds of millions. I would submit that this could be put down to language and cultural bias. In the case of France, I would expect to see a million or so more hits (in 300-400 million total) due simply to the fact that France and Iraq have been close for many years and have been involved in that country for a far longer time then the US. But what is intresting is that it isn't a small difference. We are talking hundreds of millions of sites! Why would this be so? I think the question should be asked to Google and Yahoo that, while we can understand censorship in China where the political and econmonic situation make it simply a condition of doing business, but why the censorship in places that have traditionally been strong supporters of "Free Speech"?

Someone earlier said that perhaps unfiltered and unbiaed search results should be a matter of right, and I am beginning to belive them. The searchs I ran, I honestly didn't expect to get the results that I did. That we have all been exposed to censorship bothers me more than I can say. I want to know what "they" don't want me to know.. and more than that, I want to know who this "they" is! Who decides what to censor and what not to? Where are these people? What gives them the right to decide what I, or anyone, can learn and read about?

I guess this is a rant, but I think that, unlike the latest flaw in M$ software, this is a subject that is worth a rant or two! I would love to hear an answer from Yahoo and I think I will write and ask. Who knows, maybe I will even get an answer =).

Peace

Internet searches a public good? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14927261)

Since search engines are owned and operated by private companies, they can edit and tweak search results all they want.

Which raises the question of to what extent the accurate indexing of internet information is a public good. Do internet users have a right to truthful search results, or are we subject to the whims of the market?

In any case, it's hard to imagine an alternative to commerical services like Google and Yahoo. I doubt there'd be much enthusiasm to a taxpayer-funded, publicly accountable search engine.

Personally, I stopped using web search engines ever since I started getting all my porn off bittorrents.

Re:Internet searches a public good? (2, Insightful)

meringuoid (568297) | more than 8 years ago | (#14927585)

In any case, it's hard to imagine an alternative to commerical services like Google and Yahoo. I doubt there'd be much enthusiasm to a taxpayer-funded, publicly accountable search engine.

It could be done, but it probably wouldn't work. The nice thing about the search engine business is that it doesn't lend itself to monopolies. The moment Google stops being a reliable search engine, the moment it censors enough that it's no longer the best source of information around - that's the moment it vanishes. It costs us nothing to type in a different URL in our browsers. We abandoned Yahoo! quickly enough, didn't we?

We can probably trust the market to look after this one for us. The search engines have to return the results that best match the search criteria, regardless of political or editorial pressures, or the users will go elsewhere. The chief problem at present is that most of the search engines are American, and subject to the US government; if they really wanted to abuse that power, they could, and they could do it to them all simultaneously...

Re:Internet searches a public good? (1)

AndyLandrews (954055) | more than 8 years ago | (#14927644)

good pont. how about sending a message? i'll put it out there to start with my esteemed ex-employer dogpile. young enough to listen, smart enough to do something.

Google disappear The People's Cube (1)

cortana (588495) | more than 8 years ago | (#14927642)

To steal a joke from their comments, "it's just like the good old days!"
At some point, quite recently, our popular site "The People's Cube" (ThePeoplesCube.com) was purged from Google search results. MSN , Yahoo and other search engines still have it - but Google has erased/blocked any link to the site in its database...
http://thepeoplescube.com/red/viewtopic.php?t=637 [thepeoplescube.com]

not so (1)

barutanseijin (907617) | more than 8 years ago | (#14930292)

Googling "the people's cube" at google.ca, google.co.jp, and google.com yield pretty the same result: the satire site with a persecution complex is listed second.

Purged? I think not.

Google China... (1)

Kittie Rose (960365) | more than 8 years ago | (#14927690)

If you search for the "Dalai Lama" on google china, you pretty much get redirected to a page saying what a criminal the Dalai Lama is. http://yaleglobal.yale.edu/display.article?id=6984 [yale.edu] Though you probably already knew that. Doesn't seem to work from a western IP though.

Makes you think... (1)

thePowerOfGrayskull (905905) | more than 8 years ago | (#14928144)

A search for the keywords: linux install Chinese yielded relevant results. American yielded viagra.

Tiananmen Square Massacre (1)

srobert (4099) | more than 8 years ago | (#14928314)

The site returns nonsensical results now. (Maybe as a consequence of the Slashdot effect?)
But the number of sites returned for China and the U.S. for the phrase "tiananmen square massacre" is dramatically different.
 

Hmm... (1)

Logic_Synthesizer (961122) | more than 8 years ago | (#14928335)

Did it occur to the guys behind censearchip that the overwhelmingly vast majority of Chinese web content is written in Chinese? With that in mind, I wonder how meaningful it is to compare search results of English keywords such as democracy or Tiananmen. Try these:

Google searches are not consistent (1)

dtjohnson (102237) | more than 8 years ago | (#14928345)

Try googling on "George Bush nutcase" with Windows XP and the 'no filtering' option set and you'll probably get about 198,000 hits. Now try on another platform and you could get as many as 203,000 hits.

political censorship makes finding porn easier (1)

thehossman (198379) | more than 8 years ago | (#14928371)

Aparently, the political censorship taking place for Google users in China results in making porn easier to find.

Comparing China and US with the search phrase "teen girls" results in the following unique word lists...

For China...
animal aqua beastiality bestiality blowjobs breeds brunette cheerleader cheerleaders com cum cute dog farm force fucked fucking galleries hardcore horse hunter masturbating mature milf milfhunter milfs models petite porn posing pussy rape schoolgirl seeker series shaved showing spreading stripping sweet thong thongs thumbs tiffany topless used year zoophilia

For the US...
adolescent advice april assault boy child color culture daughter daughters dave death disorders doesn't don't dr eating education exercise frank healthy image important information iraq john lindorff look march media messages mothers parents paul pope relationship relationships response right seventeen shop st support things war website weight woman women's

impartial comparison? (1)

user24 (854467) | more than 8 years ago | (#14928425)

try searching for a term (any term) between the US and US versions (or any other country and itself), not only are the number of results radically different in some cases, but the tag clouds are also often totally different.
How are we supposed to "explore the differences in the results returned by different countries' versions of the major search engines" (TFA) if the results returned by identical countries' versions of the major search engines are not the same?

seems from this that the results returned by this site are somewhat arbitrary, and certainly useless for it's purported purpose...

weird.

Re:impartial comparison? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14928554)

hmm, it seems to be quite erratic, I played around and found some terms. I would give examples, but when I retested them they rendered identical results but other previously fine terms started being different for the same country. very odd.

Re:impartial comparison? (1)

NarcoPimp (857604) | more than 8 years ago | (#14928877)

I tried it, and it seems to work correctly. It says "Fetching first 0 unique" and shows nothing, as it should...

Hitler = Bush (according to Yahoo France) (1)

themushroom (197365) | more than 8 years ago | (#14928574)

Try this: set the engine to Yahoo, the first country to France, and the search term to "hitler". The biggest fonted word under France is "bush" ... and "nazi" isn't even on the list.

Food for thought or just curious?

Compare the United States and ... (2, Insightful)

Easy2RememberNick (179395) | more than 8 years ago | (#14928703)

I'd like to see a search comparison between the US and Canada (and other Western nations). I know in the past major stories on such topics as Cuba, Mad Cow and Marijuana were not even mentioned on US TV news or in major newspapers. It's amazing how much your news is controlled, and you probably don't even realize it.

"Anal Sex" (1)

TFGeditor (737839) | more than 8 years ago | (#14929462)

Just for grins, I entered "anal sex" at the CENSEARCHIP site and hit "Image Search."

Results:

China: About 855 results
United States: About 683,000 results

The images retrieved and displayed were, to say the least, markedly different.

One would think a country with mandatory birth control would want its citizens to know all about about non-reproductive sex techniques, and encourage them.

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