The Government of the Peoples Republic of China has said it was developing its online encyclopedia to rival Wikipedia.
Wikipedia is a free encyclopedia, written collaboratively by the people who use it. It is a special type of website called wiki and is designed to make collaboration easy.
But in a move to rival the popular platform, Beijing is recruiting more than 20,000 academics from universities and research institutions for the ambitious project set to go online in 2018.
The project’s Editor-in-Chief, Yang Muzhi, said his country was under international pressure and felt an urgent need to produce its own encyclopedia to “guide and lead the public and society,” a report from South China Morning Post indicated.
The move came to light after Mr. Yang addressed a group of senior scientists at a meeting at the headquarters of the Chinese Academy of Sciences in Beijing in April.
Details of the meeting was posted on the academy’s website.
While Wikipedia is partially banned on the Chinese mainland, entries mostly on science and technology are easily accessible.
However, sensitive keyword searches such as Dalai Lama and Xi Jinping, the country’s leader, would result in the connection to the server being lost.