Questions About Green Dam Software Multiply

Danwei translates a Xinhua report defending the controversial filtering software. From their introduction:

Even setting aside concerns over privacy and free speech, the software is looking dodgier by the day.

* Analysts at the University of Michigan found programming errors that “allow remote parties to execute arbitrary code and take control of the computer.”
* The software is supposed to automatically screen for nudity in images, but it seems to use skin tone as its key criterion, leading it to block Garfield as harmful but let Doraemon (as well as actual nudity) through with no problem.
* And the fact that the government supposedly paid 41.7 million yuan for a year’s use of the software has people wondering whether the deal was on the up-and-up.

Xinhua, whose front page has been featuring upbeat articles touting the need for Green Dam, has found a simple answer to all of these objections: a small segment of the media is responsible for all of the discontent.

Rebecca MacKinnon posts links to a number of documents about the software that are circulating online.