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March 24, 2010

PRINT:  13-Page Class Handout
LISTEN: MP3 (1:57 - 942KB)
PLAY:    Online Quiz

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Google Ends Censorship On Its China Site

A Chinese government agency has criticized Google for its recent decision to stop censoring pages on its website. The search engine giant made its move after months of threats. It is now redirecting searches made by Chinese mainland users to uncensored pages in Hong Kong. The Internet department of China's State Council Information Office said Google was “totally wrong” in changing its censorship policy. The Xinhua news agency reports a Chinese official who said: "Google has violated its written promise it made when entering the Chinese market by stopping filtering its searching service”. The official also said Google should stop blaming China for hacker attacks.


The new move by Google came after months of threats of pulling out of China completely. Google repeatedly said it would ignore any threats to expel it from China. Chinese officials have issued a statement it would not change its laws because of Google’s decision. Beijing said it would “keep its Internet regulation principles unchanged”. Xinhua reports that China-US relations would not be affected by Google’s actions, "unless someone politicizes the issue". Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Qin Gang said the issue would not damage China’s image in any way. He said everyone was making a mountain out of a molehill, saying the press were "making a fuss" and "overstating the issue."


 
 

WARM-UPS

1. GOOGLE: Walk around the class and talk to other students about Google. Change partners often. Sit with your first partner(s) and share your findings.

2. CHAT: In pairs / groups, decide which of these topics or words from the article are most interesting and which are most boring.

 

government agencies / websites / censorship / searches / promises / hacker attacks / Google / threat / statements / principles / decision / image / molehills / making a fuss

Have a chat about the topics you liked. Change topics and partners frequently.

3. CENSORSHIP: Complete this table with your partner(s). Change partners and share what you wrote. Change again and share what you heard.

Medium

What should be censored

Why

Internet

 

 

Children’s TV

 

 

Newspapers

 

 

School history books

 

 

Elections

 

 

Free speech

 

 

4. INTERNET: Students A strongly believe anyone should be allowed to put anything on the Internet; Students B strongly believe the opposite.  Change partners again and talk about your conversations.

5. WEB WOES: What do you dislike most about the Internet? Rate these and share your ratings with your partner: 10 = Hate! Hate! Hate! 1 = This is no problem. Change partners and share your ratings again.

  • slow-loading sites
  • advertising on web pages
  • pop-up windows
  • sites that ask you to register
  • links that say “Page not found”
  • other Internet users
  • the design of websites
  • interactivity

6. WEBSITE: Spend one minute writing down all of the different words you associate with the word ‘website’. Share your words with your partner(s) and talk about them. Together, put the words into different categories.


 
 

BEFORE READING / LISTENING

1. TRUE / FALSE: Read the headline. Guess if  a-h  below are true (T) or false (F).

a.

The Chinese government is angry with Google.

T / F

b.

Google users in China have their searches redirected via Hong Kong.

T / F

c.

A Chinese official did say Google kept its promises.

T / F

d.

Chinese officials never said Google blamed China for hacking.

T / F

e.

Google threatened to pull out of China completely.

T / F

f.

China is now thinking about changing its censorship laws.

T / F

g.

Another Chinese official said this issue would not harm China’s image.

T / F

h.

The official said there is a new kind of virus called a molehill.

T / F

2. SYNONYM MATCH: Match the following synonyms from the article.

1.

criticized

a.

completely

2

threats

b.

pay no attention to

3.

totally

c.

holding responsible

4.

violated

d.

injure

5.

blaming

e.

attacked

6.

pulling out

f.

throw out

7.

ignore

g.

media

8.

expel

h.

warnings

9.

damage

i.

withdrawing

10.

press

j.

abused

3. PHRASE MATCH:  (Sometimes more than one choice is possible.)

1.

criticized Google for its

a.

policy

2

searches made by Chinese

b.

damage China’s image

3.

totally wrong in changing its censorship

c.

for hacker attacks

4.

Google has violated

d.

it from China

5.

Google should stop blaming China

e.

making a fuss

6.

Google repeatedly said it would

f.

unchanged

7.

threats to expel

g.

recent decision

8.

keep its Internet regulation principles

h.

mainland users

9.

the issue would not

i.

its written promise

10.

the press were

j.

ignore any threats

 

WHILE READING / LISTENING

GAP FILL: Put the words into the gaps in the text.

A Chinese government agency has ____________ Google for its recent decision to stop censoring pages on its website. The search engine giant made its move after months of ____________. It is now redirecting searches made by Chinese mainland ____________ to uncensored pages in Hong Kong. The Internet department of China's State Council Information Office said Google was “____________ wrong” in changing its censorship ____________. The Xinhua news agency reports a Chinese official who said: "Google has violated its written ____________ it made when ____________ the Chinese market by stopping filtering its searching service”. The official also said Google should stop ____________ China for hacker attacks.

 

 

 

policy
users
entering
criticized
blaming
promise
threats
totally

The new move by Google came after ____________ of threats of pulling out of China completely. Google repeatedly said it would ignore any threats to ____________ it from China. Chinese officials have issued a statement it would not change its laws because of Google’s decision. Beijing said it would “____________ its Internet regulation principles unchanged”. Xinhua reports that China-US relations would not be affected by Google’s ____________, "unless someone politicizes the ____________ ". Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Qin Gang said the issue would not damage China’s ____________ in any way. He said everyone was making a ____________ out of a molehill, saying the press were "____________ a fuss" and "overstating the issue."

 

 

actions
mountain
keep
months
making
image
expel
issue

LISTENING – Listen and fill in the gaps

A Chinese government agency has criticized Google _________________ to stop censoring pages on its website. The search engine giant made _________________  of threats. It is now redirecting searches made by Chinese mainland users to uncensored pages in Hong Kong. The Internet department of China's State Council Information Office said Google was _________________ changing its censorship policy. The Xinhua news agency reports a Chinese _________________: "Google has violated _________________ it made when entering the Chinese market by stopping filtering its searching service”. The official also said Google _________________ China for hacker attacks.

_________________ Google came after months of threats of pulling out of China completely. Google repeatedly said it _________________ threats to expel it from China. Chinese officials have issued a statement it would not _________________ because of Google’s decision. Beijing said it would “keep its Internet regulation principles unchanged”. Xinhua reports that China-US relations would _________________ Google’s actions, "unless someone politicizes the issue". Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Qin Gang said the issue would not damage China’s _________________. He said everyone was making a mountain out of a molehill, saying the press were "_________________ " and "overstating the issue."


 
 

AFTER READING / LISTENING

1. WORD SEARCH: Look in your dictionary / computer to find collocates, other meanings, information, synonyms … for the words ‘web’ and ‘site’.

web

site

 

 

 

  • Share your findings with your partners.
  • Make questions using the words you found.
  • Ask your partner / group your questions.

2. ARTICLE QUESTIONS: Look back at the article and write down some questions you would like to ask the class about the text.

  • Share your questions with other classmates / groups.
  • Ask your partner / group your questions.

3. GAP FILL: In pairs / groups, compare your answers to this exercise. Check your answers. Talk about the words from the activity. Were they new, interesting, worth learning…?

4. VOCABULARY: Circle any words you do not understand. In groups, pool unknown words and use dictionaries to find their meanings.

5. TEST EACH OTHER: Look at the words below. With your partner, try to recall how they were used in the text:

  • recent
  • move
  • users
  • totally
  • promise
  • blaming
  • pulling
  • ignore
  • change
  • keep
  • unless
  • image

STUDENT CENSORSHIP SURVEY

Write five GOOD questions about censorship in the table. Do this in pairs. Each student must write the questions on his / her own paper.

When you have finished, interview other students. Write down their answers.

 

STUDENT 1

_____________

STUDENT 2

_____________

STUDENT 3

_____________

Q.1.

 

 

 

 

Q.2.

 

 

 

 

Q.3.

 

 

 

 

Q.4.

 

 

 

 

Q.5.

 

 

 

 

  • Now return to your original partner and share and talk about what you found out. Change partners often.
  • Make mini-presentations to other groups on your findings.

CENSORSHIP DISCUSSION

STUDENT A’s QUESTIONS (Do not show these to student B)

a)

What did you think when you read the headline?

b)

What springs to mind when you hear the word ‘censorship’?

c)

How much censorship is there in your country?

d)

How do you feel when you can’t watch or read something because it has been censored?

e)

Who should decide what’s censored and what isn’t?

f)

Do you think censorship for adults is wrong?

g)

What do you think of Google’s decision to stop censoring pages in China?

h)

What do you think of China’s reaction?

i)

Would you like to work as a censor?

j)

Do you worry about what children see on the Internet?

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------

STUDENT B’s QUESTIONS (Do not show these to student A)

a)

Did you like reading this article?

b)

Do you think China would care if Google pulled out of the country?

c)

Is Google wrong for not respecting the laws in China?

d)

Do you think Google has become too powerful?

e)

Should China change its laws so its people have greater access to information?

f)

Do you think China-US relations are affected by this?

g)

Has this changed China’s image internationally?

h)

Is this really making a mountain out of a molehill?

i)

Do you think censorship will disappear all over the world one day?

j)

What questions would you like to ask Google’s boss?

LANGUAGE – MULTIPLE CHOICE

A Chinese government agency has (1) ____ Google for its recent decision to stop censoring pages on its website. The search engine (2) ____ made its move after months of threats. It is now redirecting searches made by Chinese mainland (3) ____ to uncensored pages in Hong Kong. The Internet department of China's State Council Information Office said Google was “(4) ____ wrong” in changing its censorship policy. The Xinhua news agency reports a Chinese official who said: "Google has violated its (5) ____ promise it made when entering the Chinese market by stopping filtering its searching service”. The official also said Google should stop blaming China (6) ____ hacker attacks.

The new move by Google came after months of threats of pulling out of China (7) ____. Google repeatedly said it would ignore any threats to expel it from China. Chinese officials have issued a statement it would not change its laws because of Google’s decision. Beijing said it would “(8) ____ its Internet regulation principles unchanged”. Xinhua reports that China-US relations would not be (9) ____ by Google’s actions, "(10) ____ someone politicizes the issue". Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Qin Gang said the issue would not damage China’s image in  (11) ____ way. He said everyone was making a mountain out of a molehill, saying the press were "(12) ____ a fuss" and "overstating the issue."

Put the correct words from the table below in the above article.

1.

(a)

criticism

(b)

critical

(c)

critic

(d)

criticized

2.

(a)

giant

(b)

gigantic

(c)

grants

(d)

midget

3.

(a)

used

(b)

users

(c)

using

(d)

useful

4.

(a)

totals

(b)

total

(c)

totally

(d)

totalled

5.

(a)

writing

(b)

writes

(c)

written

(d)

writer

6.

(a)

by

(b)

for

(c)

of

(d)

from

7.

(a)

completed

(b)

completion

(c)

complete

(d)

completely

8.

(a)

keep

(b)

remain

(c)

stay

(d)

hold

9.

(a)

affective

(b)

affected

(c)

effective

(d)

effected

10.

(a)

unite

(b)

untie

(c)

useless

(d)

unless

11.

(a)

many

(b)

much

(c)

any

(d)

most

12.

(a)

making

(b)

taking

(c)

faking

(d)

raking

WRITING

Write about censorship for 10 minutes. Correct your partner’s paper.

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

HOMEWORK

1. VOCABULARY EXTENSION: Choose several of the words from the text. Use a dictionary or Google’s search field (or another search engine) to build up more associations / collocations of each word.

2. INTERNET: Search the Internet and find out more about censorship. Share what you discover with your partner(s) in the next lesson.

3. GOOGLE: Make a poster about Google. Show your work to your classmates in the next lesson. Did you all have similar things?

4. CENSORS: Write a magazine article about censorship. Include imaginary interviews with a censor and someone who really disagrees with censorship.

Read what you wrote to your classmates in the next lesson. Write down any new words and expressions you hear from your partner(s).

5. LETTER: Write a letter to the boss of Google. Ask him three questions about censorship. Give him three of your opinions on censorship. Read your letter to your partner(s) in your next lesson. Your partner(s) will answer your questions.

ANSWERS

TRUE / FALSE:

a.

T

b.

T

c.

F

d.

F

e.

T

f.

F

g.

T

h.

F

SYNONYM MATCH:

1.

criticized

a.

attacked

2

threats

b.

warnings

3.

totally

c.

completely

4.

violated

d.

abused

5.

blaming

e.

holding responsible

6.

pulling out

f.

withdrawing

7.

ignore

g.

pay no attention to

8.

expel

h.

throw out

9.

damage

i.

injure

10.

press

j.

media

PHRASE MATCH:

1.

criticized Google for its

a.

recent decision

2

searches made by Chinese

b.

mainland users

3.

totally wrong in changing its censorship

c.

policy

4.

Google has violated

d.

its written promise

5.

Google should stop blaming China

e.

for hacker attacks

6.

Google repeatedly said it would

f.

ignore any threats

7.

threats to expel

g.

it from China

8.

keep its Internet regulation principles

h.

unchanged

9.

the issue would not

i.

damage China’s image

10.

the press were

j.

making a fuss

GAP FILL:

Google ends censorship on its China site

A Chinese government agency has criticized Google for its recent decision to stop censoring pages on its website. The search engine giant made its move after months of threats. It is now redirecting searches made by Chinese mainland users to uncensored pages in Hong Kong. The Internet department of China's State Council Information Office said Google was “totally wrong” in changing its censorship policy. The Xinhua news agency reports a Chinese official who said: "Google has violated its written promise it made when entering the Chinese market by stopping filtering its searching service”. The official also said Google should stop blaming China for hacker attacks.

The new move by Google came after months of threats of pulling out of China completely. Google repeatedly said it would ignore any threats to expel it from China. Chinese officials have issued a statement it would not change its laws because of Google’s decision. Beijing said it would “keep its Internet regulation principles unchanged”. Xinhua reports that China-US relations would not be affected by Google’s actions, "unless someone politicizes the issue". Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Qin Gang said the issue would not damage China’s image in any way. He said everyone was making a mountain out of a molehill, saying the press were "making a fuss" and "overstating the issue."

LANGUAGE WORK

1 - d

2 - a

3 - b

4 - c

5 - c

6 - b

7 - d

8 - a

9 - b

10 - d

11 - c

12 - a

 

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