We have been critical of Wikipedia's approach to censorship in the Middle Kingdom. In a recent piece, I lamented the loss of Wikipedia in China. The encyclopedia's founder, Jimmy Wales, reached out to us and agreed to publish our unedited exchange on the difficult nature of dealing with censorship in China.
If the censors were ever embarrassed, they certainly are no longer. With the support of Xi Jinping, they are emboldened. And we expect to see the authorities take further steps to crack down on any website, mobile app or circumvention tool that allows Chinese citizens to freely access information. Rest in peace, Wikipedia.
BEIJING -- "Under the Dome" displays the growing power of social media in China today. It is not a production of any official filmmaking companies, whose products have traditionally dominated the Chinese TV and film screens. This dominance, however, has been challenged by the rising mobile internet and social media. With an exploding 730 million user accounts of mobile Internet in 2014, more and more Chinese individuals are putting up their self-made videos on entertaining portals like youku and iQiyi,
The Cultural Revolution days of an autarkic closed information loop when the Communist Party could dictate a narrative for an isolated and impoverished society are over for China. To believe otherwise is to undermine the very links to the rest of the world that have enabled China to become the ever-more prospering world power it is today.
China's censors are well trained and equipped to identify content that poses a potential challenge to the Chinese Communist Party's social and ideological control. We have consistently found that the most interesting stories are those which propaganda officials handpick to censor, but which Internet users feel compelled to discuss anyway, often using coded or cryptic language.
The success of the Internet in China over the past 20 years shows that successful foreign companies in China respect China's market environment and abide by China's law and regulations. U.S. companies operating in China show that those who respect the Chinese law can seize the opportunity of China' s Internet innovation and create immense value, while those who chose opposition stand will be isolated by themselves and finally abandoned by the Chinese market.