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In the classroom discussion of IGCBP10, Asia/India group under the Socio-cultural basket - 8.3 Privacy and Data Protection, a student highlighted regarding “Human Flesh Search; a Chinese internet phenomeon”  The Hypertext entry is as follows:


 


Human Flesh Search (Chinese: 人肉搜索; pinyin: Rénròu Sōusuǒ) is a primarily Chinese internet phenomenon of massive researching using Internet media such as blogs and forums for the purpose of
identifying and exposing individuals to public humiliation, usually out of
Chinese nationalistic sentiment, or to break the Internet censorship in the
People's Republic of China. It is based on massive human collaboration. The
name refers both to the use of knowledge contributed by human beings through
social networking, as well as the fact that the searches are usually dedicated
to finding the identity of a human being who has committed some sort of offense
or social breach online. People conducting such research are commonly referred
to collectively as "Human Flesh Search Engines". Because of the
convenient and efficient nature of information sharing on the cyberspace, the
Human Flesh Search is often used to acquire information usually difficult or
impossible to find by other conventional means (such as library or Google).
Such information, once available, can be rapidly distributed to hundreds of websites,
making it an extremely powerful mass media. The purposes of human flesh search
vary from providing technical/professional Q&A support, to revealing
private/classified information about specific individuals or organizations
(therefore breaching the internet confidentiality and anonymity). Because
personal knowledge or unofficial (sometimes illegal) access are frequently
depended upon to acquire these information, the reliability and accuracy of
such searches often vary. 1. Etymology The origin of the term is disputed. One
such theory is that the word was inspired by "Chicago typewriter" in
the novel Ghost Blows Out the Light, which started a trend of describing manual
inputting as "Human Flesh typewriter".[citation needed] A more accepted
theory is that the term was coined by netizens on MOP, a popular Chinese
BBS.[citation needed] 2. History The first recognized Human Flesh Search dated
back to March 2006, when netizens on Tianya Club collaborated to identify an
Internet celebrity named "Poison" (毒药).
The man was found out to be a high-level government official. In the process,
netizens coined the line "On the Internet, everybody knows you're a
dog", meaning that anonymity is not guaranteed on the Internet. Over the
years, the Human Flesh Search was repeatedly deployed, sometimes fueling moral
crusades against socially unacceptable behaviors, such as political
corruptions, extramarital affairs, animal cruelties or perceived
betrayal/hostilities towards the Chinese nation. Individuals on the receiving end
often have their real-life identities or private information made public, and
can be subjected to harassment such as hate mails/calls, death threats,
graffiti and social humiliation. Organizations can be subjected to collaborated
cyber-attacks. The Baojia system of community rule-of-law in ancient China bears
strong similarities with Human Flesh Search. Both are based on some form of
vigilantism. 3. People's Republic of China's
stance on the human flesh search In December 2008, The People's Court in Beijing called it as an
alarming phenomenon because of its implications in cyber-violence and
violations of privacy law. [4] This article contains Traditional Chinese text.
Without proper rendering support, you may see question marks, boxes, or other
symbols instead of Chinese characters. References The Times: Human flesh search
engines: Chinese vigilantes that hunt victims on the web The Guardian: How
China's internet generation broke the silence
http://www.nytimes.com/2010/03/07/magazine/07Human-t.html? Chinese court fines
Web user in 'cyber-violence' case 5. Further reading Hannah Fletcher
(2008-06-25). "Human flesh search engines: Chinese vigilantes that hunt
victims on the web". The Times (London:
Times Newspapers Ltd). http://technology.timesonline.co.uk./tol/news/tech_and_web/article4...


 


Red Guards to Cyber-vigilantism to where next? Bing Wang, Bonan Hou, Yiping Yao, Laibin Yan. Human Flesh Search Model Incorporating Network Expansion and GOSSIP with Feedback. 2009 13th IEEE/ACM International
Symposium on Distributed Simulation and Real Time Applications (DS-RT 2009):
82-88. 6. External links Google Human Flesh Search (Chinese) Human Flesh
Search' a crime? 'From flash mob to lynch mob', CNN, June 5, 2007 Sky Canaves
from WSJ.com:‘Human Flesh Search Engines’ Set Their Sights on Official
Misbehavior TVO's Search Engine podcast on The Human Flesh Search Engine In the
absence of a fair and open judicial system, Chinese Netizens have become
digital vigilantes. Posted Tue, 11 Aug 2009 • [[|d]] • Anonymous and the
Internet Related websites 4chan · Encyclopedia Dramatica · Something Awful
Topics eBaum's World · Epilepsy Forums · Habbo Hotel · Scientology · Project
Chanology · Hal Turner Terms Griefer · Imageboard · Internet vigilantism ·
Lurker · Troll Internet portal

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