Sensitive Words: Zhou Yongkang, Media, Shade

Sensitive Words: Zhou Yongkang, Media, Shade

As of December 17, the following search terms are blocked on Sina Weibo (not including the “search for user” function).

Zhou Yongkang Under Investigation: The New York Times reported on Monday that former security czar Zhou Yongkang is being investigated for corruption. Chinese netizens use nicknames and use characters homophonous with those in Zhou’s full name (Zhou Yongkang 周永康) to continue the conversation, but the censors are catching up with many of these alternate “spellings.”

In the blocked keywords listed below, homophonous characters are translated to show their place in Zhou’s name. They are used purely for sound.

  • kang
  • Kangkang (康康)
  • Zhou Brave-kang (周勇康)
  • Zhou Yong-bran (周永糠)
  • State Yongkang (州永康)
  • Continent Yongkang (洲永康)
  • Congee Yongkang (粥永康)
  • Congee Yong-bran (粥永糠)
  • Congee Gush-kang (粥涌康)
  • Boat Yongkang (舟永康)
  • Chant-kang (咏康)
  • Chant-bran (咏糠)
  • Gush-kang (涌康)
  • Gush-bran (涌糠)
  • Swollen-kang (臃康)


In addition, these keywords have been retested:

  • ZYK: First identified as blocked on March 22, 2012.
  • 周永康: First identified as blocked on April 16, 2011.
  • 周永K: First identified as blocked on March 24, 2012.
  • Z永K: First identified as blocked on May 22, 2012.



  • regulation of media (媒体管制): A new exam for journalists in China will focus on the “Marxist view of journalism.”
  • government is shadier than property developers (政府比房产商黑): At the NetEase Annual Economist Conference, real estate tycoon Ren Zhiqiang said that soaring real estate prices are due to government manipulation, not a housing bubble. “As I see it, the government has never thought it had a bubble. If it did, it wouldn’t be this shady. It wouldn’t use such shady land prices to adjust our real estate market” (我看政府从来不认为自己有泡沫,政府要认为有泡沫他就不会这么黑,用这么黑的地价去调整我们的房地产市场了). Read more [zh].

Via CDT Chinese.

All Chinese-language words are tested using simplified characters. The same terms in traditional characters occasionally return different results.

Browse all of CDT’s collected sensitive words on our bilingual Google spreadsheet.

CDT Chinese runs a project that crowd-sources filtered keywords on Sina Weibo search. CDT independently tests the keywords before posting them, but some searches later become accessible again. We welcome readers to contribute to this project so that we can include the most up-to-date information.

Have a sensitive word tip? Submit it to CDT through this form:


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