Tiananmen: The cliché of the man in front of the tanks disappears with bingo

Tiananmen: The cliché of the man in front of the tanks disappears with bingo

(ATS) “We are actively working to resolve this,” said a spokesperson for Microsoft, the computer giant that operates Bing, several hours after the report in the US press.

A search for “tank man” brought up hundreds of occurrences of the image of American photographer Charlie Cole, on “Google Images”, the major competing service at large on the Internet.

We see an unidentified protester in a white shirt trying to symbolically block the progress of a column of at least 17 tanks at Tiananmen Square in Beijing on June 5, 1989. The pro-democracy protests had been going on for seven weeks. Their repression had left hundreds, if not more than a thousand, dead.

The cliché, which received the World Press Award for Photography of the Year in 1990, remains largely unknown in China due to censorship.

The country has an extensive Internet surveillance system, which allows it to purge any material deemed sensitive, such as political criticism or pornography. Also, in the name of sustainability, the digital giants need to have their own sensors to make the country do this task upwards.

Failure to comply with these rules, most foreign search engines and social networks are blocked in China and Internet users can only access them with bypass software (VPN).

Any commemoration of Tiananmen Daman is prohibited in China. The semi-autonomous territory of Hong Kong was the only place where it was tolerated. But candlelight surveillance was banned this year, with Beijing turning against all forms of protest in the former British colony. The park where it stands has fallen vacant for the first time in 32 years.

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