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LinkedIn Launches Chinese-Language Site Named Ling Ying With Government Censorship

LinkedIn rolled out a Chinese language version of it professional networking site this Monday, a move that could help the company greatly increase its user base.

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LinkedIn is launching a Chinese-language site (currently in beta testing) for the world's most populous internet market

LinkedIn already had an English version of the site available in China with more than 4 million users (it will still remain in use), according to a company blog post.

mashable.com

The Simplified Chinese version of Linkedin, 领英, is in beta testing right now.

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The social network said it hopes to ultimately "connect over 140 million Chinese professionals" with its new site — that's roughly half of its current worldwide user base of 277 million.

networkworld.com

While the beta test of the site, lingying.com, has gone live, its registration is currently invitation-only.

technode.com

The idea behind launching the Chinese-version of LinkedIn is to make it easier for native Chinese speakers to use the social business network

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The Chinese name of LinkedIn turns out to be Ling Ying (领英)– the two Chinese characters mean leading and elite, respectively.

networkworld.com

By launching the site, the company has also agreed to follow China's controversial regulations on censorship

The announcement has come under fire already, with reaction to Weiner's online admission that the company has agreed to cooperate with Chinese authorities on data storage and censorship.

cnn.com
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Though it's not completely clear how LinkedIn will enforce government-imposed restrictions, Weiner promised three things: to implement restrictions on content only when required, to be transparent in its dealings with China, and to protect the rights and data of members.

recode.net

It's worth noting that even before the Simplified Chinese site, LinkedIn was one of the only U.S.-based social networks that the Chinese government allowed access to in China

Facebook, Twitter, Google, and many other Internet services remain blocked in mainland China.

techcrunch.com
Image via mshcdn.com

It seems that LinkedIn was blocked for a day in February 2011, though there was never an official government statement about it, because the government was concerned that information about pro-democracy protests were spreading too quickly, inspired by action contributing to the Arab Spring.

cnet.com

LinkedIn is now offered in 22 different languages

Users can switch the language of their profile by going to "Privacy and Settings," clicking the "Account" tab on the left-hand side and clicking "Select your language."

mashable.com