The Chinese government has prohibited all domestic tech companies from offering ChatGPT or related services on their platforms. The state media has stated unequivocally that ChatGPT, which is based in the United States, disseminates false information that could be detrimental to Chinese sovereignty.
China Daily posted on Weibo on February 20 that the chatbot could assist the United States government in its dissemination of disinformation and manipulation of global narratives for its own geopolitical interests.
The government has ordered tech titans such as Tencent and Alibaba group to cease offering ChatGPT services on their platforms, whether directly or through a third party. In addition, the government has mandated that any company wishing to launch a chatbot or related Artificial Intelligence service must first obtain permission from regulators. No one will be permitted to launch ChatGPT-style services in China absent permission.
In China, ChatGPT, the app with the fastest growth rate in human history, has become a sensation. Even though ChatGPT is not officially available in the country, numerous users have accessed it via VPN (Virtual Private Network). Additionally, some third-party developers have released mini-programs that claim to offer ChatGPT’s services in part. These programmes have been widely promoted on Tencent’s WeChat, the Chinese equivalent of WhatsApp.
Tencent banned all parties that provide ChatGPT and related services in China following the announcement of the new regulations. The company, which has already experienced the wrath of Chinese regulators in its gaming industry, does not wish to take any additional risks with the government. Therefore, it has banned all ChatGPT programmes and other services that even remotely resemble the ChatBot or its artificial intelligence system.
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Why China will never accept the ChatGPT protocol
It should not come as a surprise that the Chinese government is cracking down on technology firms. The government, renowned for its internet censorship and control, will never allow ChatGPT to gain access to the country. Open-ChatGPT AI’s is a continually learning and evolving artificial intelligence that is difficult to control.
Recently, ChatGPT compiled a list of controversial individuals that included notable figures such as Elon Musk, Vladimir Putin, and Xi Jinping. It also gave the communist party a poor rating.
If permitted in China, ChatGPT would inevitably be used to ask politically sensitive questions. The government may not accept the responses to such inquiries. Nevertheless, the service provider or platform will be held accountable for the problem. Consequently, many tech companies are already avoiding ChatGPT and related services.
ChatGPT lists Trump, Elon Musk as controversial and worthy of special treatment, Biden and Bezos as not. I've got more examples. @elonmusk pic.twitter.com/92bNDQo4qY
— Isaac Latterell (@IsaacLatterell) February 19, 2023
ChatGPT Competitors in China
In spite of the fact that ChatGPT will never be permitted in China, the government is keeping a close eye on tech giants like Alibaba and Baidu, who have promised to launch their own Chatbots similar to ChatGPT. NetEase Inc, a Chinese internet technology company, and JD.com, an e-commerce platform, have also announced plans to develop ChatGPT competitors.
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Last week, Fudan University in Shanghai released MOSS, a competitor to ChatGPT, for public testing. By March, Ernie Bot, Baidu’s version of the ChatGPT application, is expected to have completed internal testing. JD.com (Jindong) is also developing ChatJD, its own version of the chatbot. Chinese tech companies have assured the government that their apps will have nothing to do with ChatGPT and that their services will not necessarily be chatbots, but may include AI features that can be regulated in accordance with regulations.