China to Launch Own Encyclopedia to Compete Wikipedia

China to Launch Own Encyclopedia to Compete Wikipedia

China revealed to launch its own Encyclopedia by next year. They plan to build a cultural Great Wall than can compete Wikipedia. This platform will have go to information source for Chinese Internet Users who Beijing fears are corrupted by foreign influences. China to Launch Own Encyclopedia to Compete Wikipedia.

Tang Muzhi, project Executive Editor explained that China is under pressure to publish its own Encyclopedia to guide public thought. Muzhi compared Wikipedia and Britain’s Britannica and termed them as rivals. He ensured that China’s Encyclopedia will compete both of them.

China to Launch Own Encyclopedia to Compete Wikipedia

This project is under the guidance of state owned China Publishing Group. It will have Chinese characteristics. Muzhi proudly told than this encyclopedia will be a symbol of country’s cultural and technological development. It will increase China’s soft power and international influences.

Previously Wikipedia and its Chinese version Baidu Bauke was written by volunteers and need too much revision. The new Chinese encyclopedia will be written by professionals. It was approved in 2011 and still in progress. Right now 20,000 scholars and academics are working on the projects. More than 30,000 entries will be added by its launch in 2018.

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The new encyclopedia will be based on a previously printed version, published in book form in 1993. A second edition, which can be accessed through a special terminal, was released in 2009. The newest version will be released online before being published in a bound edition.

China has approximately 700 million internet users. A report by US tank freedom House 2015 revealed that the country has most restrictive online policies.  It has maintained that its various forms of web censorship known as “The Great Firewall”. They have incorporated this to protect its national security.

Sites blocked due to their content or sensitivity, among them Facebook and Twitter, cannot be accessed in China without special software that allows users to bypass the strict controls.

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