Study of “Soft” Censorship of Social Media in China

“Researchers in Carnegie Mellon University’s School of Computer Science analyzed millions of Chinese microblogs, or “weibos,” to uncover a set of politically sensitive terms that draw the attention of Chinese censors. Individual messages containing the terms were often deleted at rates that could vary based on current events or geography.

The study is the first large-scale analysis of political content censorship in social media. The analysis found that the level of online censorship varied between different provinces. The phenomenon was particularly notable in Tibet, a hotbed of political unrest, where up to 53 percent of locally generated microblogs were deleted.”

You can read the full press release here.