Meet the Chinese Internet Police

If you live in China, the Internet is tightly controlled.  CNN estimates about two million people monitor what people post (; other sources say there are 100,000 censors.

How obvious is it?  The Internet Surveillance Division of the Public Security Bureau in Shenzhen Province actually has two cartoon mascots to remind Internet users that someone is watching.  They even have names — Jingjing (male) and Chacha (female).  Not only are they symbols of a police presence, they are also a link to information.  This site explains all about them — .  They even have their own Wikipedia entry —

I learned about Jingjing and Chacha through a podcast from a new National Public Radio show — Undiscovered, “a podcast that tells about the backstories of science”. This program was entitled “Boss Hua and the Black Box” ( and discussed Chinese Internet censorship in detail.

It was a fascinating program.  If you don’t have time to listen, I’ll give you a spoiler — what seems to get censored is not criticism, but calls to action.  Of course, in a dictatorship there are no guarantees.


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