When eBay first bought Skype, one of the big reasons they stated was Skype's widespread use in China -- where eBay had little presence. This didn't make much sense at the time, because it didn't seem likely that Chinese Skypers would suddenly start buying and selling products on eBay... but, then again, it wasn't our billions that were being spent. The "China" reason for the Skype acquisition has looked worse and worse ever since the deal happened. There have been reports of local governments banning Skype, and at least two Chinese telcos have bought or looked at Skype-blocking filters. As you might imagine, this means that Skype management is bending over backwards to do whatever the Chinese government wants to actually remain usable to the country's 1.3 billion or so residents. So, with that in mind, perhaps it should come as no surprise at all to find out Skype has a text filter in place to censor Skype text chat conversations in China. Where this becomes questionable is that Skype has always touted how its conversations are entirely encrypted -- and thus they shouldn't be able to filter anything. It also could raise questions about what else Skype has been willing to do to keep the Chinese government happy. What's next? Forced government licenses for all Skype users?
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