Well, now, here's a cute little police-state effort by the Chinese to improve Internet security: Animated cyber cops, who appear every 30 minutes on computer screens to remind Chinese surfers about laws against "objectionable content" on the Web and -- oh, by the way, would they like to report any illicit activity?
Remember that annoying Microsoft Office paperclip? It's like that, except, you know, scarier.
But who am I to judge? Depending on what type of company you work for, it might just be the solution for employees who keep breaking your Internet use policies.
Just to keep things fun, the two cops -- male and female -- may appear riding on a motorcycle, in a police car or in different disguises, but every 30 minutes, they'll be popping up on the browser's of Beijing's 5.46 million netizens. The animated cops were first tested in Shenzen, a city in the Guangdong Province, according to eCommerce Times.
The animated police were designed by Sohu.com and can actually "take" reports of cybercrime, online pornography, online gambling, profanity, pirated music and videos ("Hurray for China!" cheers Hollywood) or other malicious content.
Of course, Internet censorship -- or, really, all forms of censorship -- isn't new for China, which has an information gateway that filters IP traffic from outside China. It's called the Great Wall.
A virtual Great Wall. Patrolling virtual police. Isn't that just too ... cute?