China: No more dirty joke via SMS

According to last week's Xinhuanet report, Mobile China Shanghai branch will start suspending a mobile phone's SMS function if they find the number distribute “vulgar”, “pornographic” and other illegal contents(Details see GVA). Other cities and mobile companies also carry out similar practices since the beginning of 2010. The new policy implies that the campaign against the proliferation of pornography on mobile devices as outlined by the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology (MIIT) official document has entered the second stage.

As Damon from points out, “the monitoring of mobile SMS has not only invaded citizen’ private life but also set up an infrastructure to crack down social mobilization via mobile phone”.

Mainland blogger Gaulo is also aware of the presence of Big Brother behind the filtering of dirty joke:

手機短信受到管制,其實意味著我們所有的短信都受到了管制。我們所發的每一個字背后都有一雙眼 睛在盯著,時時刻刻!這不是流氓行徑么?不難想象以后如果我們用手機調情是不是也會在中途突然受到警告,然后被強行勒令去寫保證書?越想越覺的恐怖。我們 到底是什么樣的國家?我們想成為什么樣的國家?網絡收網先行,現在有輪到手機了。我們的自由和隱私再也無法捍衛了,我們已經退到了邊緣的邊緣,最終我們無 路可退。我們沒有特權,甚至連基本的權利也沒有,任意被踐踏。算了,我祈求政府把我們都從閹割了吧

The control over mobile SMS implies that all our communication via SMS is being monitored. Every words that we send out will be watched. Isn't that thug's behavior? It isn't hard to imagine that we would be warned if we are flirting with others via mobile. Then we will be forced to write a guarantee letter promising that we won't do that again. This is so terrible. What kind of country we are in? What do we want our country to become? We have already controlled our internet, and now our mobile. We can't defend our privacy anymore. We are standing at the margin of a cliff and there is no way out. We don't have any privilege and now even our basic human rights have been trampled upon. Well, our government may as well castrated us.

Visame2 advises lovers and couples to use secret codes in their communication:

从 现在起,应该赶紧学学电视上特务的接头暗号,比如用“打酱油”代表想亲热之类,但“俯卧撑”是万万不能用的.而且,一定要随时关注“技术标准”的变化,一 旦用“打酱油”当暗号的多了,人家的“词库”必然要与时俱进更新,就像现在“同志”这个曾经最普通的称呼已经被很多网站屏蔽一样.

From now on, we should learn from the secret agents from the television program and use secret codes in daily communication. Such as using the term “buying soya bean sauce” to imply love making. Don't use terms like “push up”. Moreover, we have to pay attention to the technical definition of “vulgarity”. Once a secret code become popular, it would be added to their dictionary. We have to update ourselves. For example, the term “comrade” is now filtered in many websites…

Prominent writer Han Han decided to test the system:

我看到一个新闻说,以后手机上转发黄段子或者黄色信息将停止该手机短信功能,必须到公安局写下保证书才能开通短信功能。政府就是这样,他永远给你一个动词 和名词,然后永远不解释这个名词,比如说,不能反革命,但从来不告诉你什么是反革命,不能犯流氓罪,但从来不告诉你什么是流氓罪,这次是不能发黄段子,但 是从来不告诉你什么是黄段子。我本将心照政府,奈何政府没标准,导致了有些朋友莫名其妙就触到了雷区,甚至有些五毛党都经常陷于拍个马屁结果审核没通过的 尴尬。…鉴于快到 新年,为了避免广大网友在转发各种短信的时候不幸被停机,导致年初一进派出所写保证书的悲剧发生,我决定牺牲自己,在这几天里,源源不断的转发各种黄段 子,直到我的手机被停机了,我再上来转告大家,到底什么叫做黄段子或者黄色信息。所以,最近接收到我的黄色段子或者色情短信的朋友们,请不要误会,我不是 在发春也不是要调情,我只是在探索。

The news about suspending the SMS function of a mobile number has caught my attention. It said that when a person send out or forward a dirty joke or message with sexual implications, the SMS of that mobile phone would be suspended and the owner have to go to the police station to write a guarantee letter in order to resume the service. Our government is always like this. It gives you a verb and a noun but never explains what they mean. For example, they never explain to you the meaning of counter-revolutionary. Another example is the crime of hooliganism. This time it is dirty joke. However, what exactly is dirty joke? The government has not set up any standard and we are forced to enter a land mine zone. Even the 50 cents find the whole thing confusing… As the lunar new year is approaching, in order to save netizens from stepping into this trap, spending their new year in police station, I decide to sacrifice myself. In the coming few days, i will keep sending out dirty jokes until my mobile is suspended. Then I will report back to you guys, what is the meaning of dirty joke or yellow message. If you receive my dirty jokes these days, don't get me wrong. I am not flirting, I am just exploring.

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