China Blocks Google, YouTube This Week, Could It Become Permanent

Seems the Chinese government used the "Great Firewall" to block Google, YouTube and Gmail for a couple of days this week, Fox News reported.

Seems access to Google both in English and Chinese was blocked for part of Wednesday and Thursday in parts of China. Fox News stated, "The outages occurred after China accused the Internet behemoth of spreading pornography among its citizens. Google was said to be investigating the service disruptions."

Given China has its own internal search engines and the government has strict control, Google has acknowledged it is censoring search results in the country.

Foreign Affairs Ministry spokesman, Qin Gang said Google China "is a company operating within China to provide Internet search services, and it should strictly abide by Chinese laws and regulations," Fox News reported.

As Britain's Telegraph reports, Google established the localized search engine Google.cn four years ago, agreeing to filter results based on government censorship restrictions and content requirements, but Chinese officials say that has not been the case due to its links with Google.com.

"Google China's website has not installed filters to block pornography in accordance with the laws and regulations of our nation," said the CIIRC - the China Internet Illegal Information Reporting Centre, according to the U.K. Guardian. "A lot of overseas Internet pornographic information has spread into our nation by way of this website."

Given nearly half the world's population lives in China Google could be losing a major market which is just now starting to become an active consumer online. Google had said they would address China's requests but with the 60th anniversary of the Communisy regime coming, it seems they did not do it quickly enough.

TechCrunch asked commenters in one of their blog posts to help clarify what was happening in China and received information from "a person seemingly located in Xiamen, China" that , "says Google Books, Google Talk and Image Search have also been blocked in the comment section of this post. Other services like Blog Search, Translate, Maps and Analytics are reportedly borked as well. YouTube has been blocked in the country for quite some time already".

About the author

Frank Watson has been involved with the Web since it started. For the past five years, he headed SEM for FXCM -- at one time one of the top 25 spenders with AdWords. He has worked with most of the major analytics companies and pioneered the ability to tie online marketing with offline conversion.

He has now started his own marketing agency, Kangamurra Media. This new venture will keep him busy when he is not editing the Search Engine Watch forums, blogging at a number of authoritative sites, and developing some interesting online community sites.

He was one of the first 100 AdWords Professionals, a Yahoo and Overture Ambassador, and a member or mod of many of the industry forums. He is also on the Click Quality Council and has worked hard to diminish click fraud.