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China’s Online Porn Purge

China's never ending war on porn

04·24·2014

China’s Online Porn Purge

China's never ending war on porn

04·24·2014

Sex makes the internet go round, and pretty much the whole world in fact, although perhaps not for much longer in China. China’s “Clean Net 2014” drive to rid the web of a the widening spread of pornography has started off to significant success. In a blow to single men everywhere, the State Information Office have investigated and closed 110 pornographic websites, 3,300 social media accounts linked to porn and deleted over 200,000 pornographic posts since January.

Cleaning the internet of pornography is a simply Sisyphean task. New sites are constantly surfing the, often blurred, lines as to what is and isn’t sexually acceptable; one man’s porn is another’s tame arty photograph. Although pornography is illegal in China, many websites, DVDs and other media still contain lashings of the stuff.

Officials  told popular online bloggers to “promote virtues” and to “uphold the law” when they launched the new scheme, and many supposed experts have said China’s crackdown on rumors and pornography is necessary to preserve social stability and, of course, children’s innocence, pouring scorn on Western media claims that the government is using the campaign as a pretext to limit freedom of speech. Although you are not able to access Twitter, Facebook and other prominent Western websites,  pornography has a huge online presence in China, which seems to carry on regardless of the Great Firewall of China.

In possibly one of the hardest jobs in the world,  China has employed people to watch endless hours of  videos, which may or may not contain pornography, to decide if it is suitable for Chinese audiences. One pornography censor has watched over 600,000 minutes of porn in his five years of working, claiming the vast majority sickened him. Some inoffensive websites and accounts have been caught in the crossfire, either being closed down or investigated. The pressure to have a cleaner web not only free of porn but also from apparent rumor mongering is seeing a tightening of governments control over the web but, with male appetites being what they are, porn might just be the the one thing that can never be stopped.