Baidu Sued for Aiding Chinese Censorship

Eight Chinese citizens living in New York have sued Baidu, China’s largest search engine, for censoring content. Bloomberg reports:

The plaintiffs seek $16 million in damages from the company and the Chinese government after their “writings, publications and coverage of pro-democracy events” were censored and banned from Baidu’s search engine, according to a complaint filed yesterday in Manhattan federal court. They also charge Baidu and China violated New York State civil rights laws.

China requires websites to self censor pornography, gambling and content critical of the ruling Communist Party, a rule that led Google Inc. to pull its search engine out of the country last year. The world’s largest Internet market by users blocks Google’s YouTube video-sharing site as well as social networking services run by Facebook Inc. and Twitter Inc.

[…] “China will be required to answer the complaint or there will be a default judgment against them,” Stephen Preziosi, the New York-based lawyer representing the plaintiffs, said in a telephone interview.

May 18, 2011 10:05 PM
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