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Bing Censoring Searches in Arab Countries


The Open Net Initiative claims that the Microsoft search engine Bing blocks out the results of LGBT queries and other content deemed "adult" in its Arab version.

According to The Register, "the group carried out a test in January of Bing as intended for Middle Eastern sensibilities and found that it filtered Arabic and English words related to saucy material available online."

Unlike the version of Bing in some countries, the version for "Arabian countries" does not allow users to toggle on and off the SafeSearch setting, according to ONI, as reported by The Register.

"A message popped up that read: 'Your country or region requires a strict Bing SafeSearch setting, which filters out results that might return adult content,' claimed the ONS when its researchers typed in a query for something a bit racy or homosexual via the Arab version of Bing."

On the other hand, Bing apparently does not force searches based on IP addresses, which at least allows a user in a censored country to bypass the filtering by choosing a different version of the search engine.

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