Internet search leader Google has begun to warn its users in China about a possible temporary disconnection from Internet if they would search for a censored keyword. It should be noted that the Chinese government censors Internet usage in China for political reasons. The authorities’ relationship has been particularly difficult with Google in recent the past. Google has several times threatened to withdraw its services from China.
Now, when Chinese users begin to type a banned term in Google search –they get the following warning message:
We’ve observed that searching for [ ] in mainland China may temporarily break your connection to Google. This interruption is outside Google’s control
Google users in China have been facing problems with search. They often get messages like “This webpage is not available” or “The connection was reset”… According to Google, such interruptions have nothing to do with Google. Such things are happening because authorities are monitoring the Internet traffic and they blocks a connection if a banned search is detected.
Google has published a blog post in which the company says that they reviewed 350,000 most popular search terms in China and found that a number of them are simple words in everyday use. For example the keyword “Jiang” invokes the warning even though it is a common surname in China. However, Jiang is also the first name of former Chinese president Jiang Zemin whose death was rumoured and Chinese authorities banned the search term in an attempt to halt the spread of rumour.