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China Sued by US Web Filtering Company on Green Dam Software

On January 4, 2010, Santa Barbara, California-based CYBERsitter, LLC filed a lawsuit against China, two Chinese software makers, and seven computer manufacturers for their involvement in creating and distributing Green Dam software. University of Michigan’s scientists found that they had taken CYBERsitter’s code. CYBERsitter seeks $2.2 billion in damages for copyright infringement, theft of trade secrets, unfair competition, and civil conspiracy. The company alleges that the defendants distributed over 56 million copies of the Green Dam software.

In June 2009, China mandated that all new computers must have Green Dam installed starting July 1, 2009. Green Dam was said to protect youth from accessing porn sites, but it was revealed to block people from accessing websites on the government’s black list such as Falun Gong, Dalai Lama, and so on. The mandatory installation was eventually stopped because of strong protests by Western governments and computer manufacturers.

1. Beijing Youth, January 9, 2010
2. Information Week, January 5, 2010