China's not backing down but Green Dam Girl fights back

Summary:Green Dam Girl is the manifestation of Chinese youth's anger over Youth Escort.There was a glimmer of hope that China would take an honorable retreat on Green Dam-Youth Escort and only require PC makers to ship the software on CD or with an install file.


Green Dam Girl is the manifestation of Chinese youth's anger over Youth Escort.

There was a glimmer of hope that China would take an honorable retreat on Green Dam-Youth Escort and only require PC makers to ship the software on CD or with an install file. "The use of this software is not compulsory," an official said recently, as repeated here.

But The New York Times is reporting that PC makers say China has not changed the original edict that all computers sold in China come with Youth Escort preinstalled.

On Wednesday, the major U.S. computer makers said they had yet to hear anything concrete from China regarding making installation of Green Dam optional. “We are still reviewing it and working with the related trade associations and the government on how it could be applied,” said David Frink, a spokesman for Dell.

If anything the national government's edict has emboldened regional governments to assert more control, too. The Beijing government's Spiritual Civilization Office says it is trying to recruit 10,000 volunteers to monitor net content. It's part of a plan of “purifying social civilization,” said spokesman Ms. Guo.

Meanwhile Chinese youth mock the Green Dam program, kidding each other that if they don't behave, "I'll youth-escort you." Anti-Green Dam websites and petitions are popular. And a Manga-style cartoon mocking the thought police has appeared: Green Dam Girl.

Danwei quotesChinese blogger Hecaitou on the Girl.

According to Hecaitou, the images show the creativity of the post 80s generation (i.e. those born after 1980). The Green Dam Girl character carries a rabbit (the Green Dam software's mascot), wears a River Crab badge (a pun about 'harmonious society that Chinese netizens use to mock Internet censorship), and holds a bucket of paint (or soy sauce) to wipe out online filth.

Topics: China, Censorship, Dell, Government

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