Stringer Shanghai / Reuters

Last week, discussions on the anniversary of the Tiananmen Massacre flared up across social media. Most of these discussions, on banned sites like Twitter and Facebook, were censored by the Chinese government, which historically cracks down on Tiananmen mentions. But there was an exception—Reddit, despite hosting prominent critical discussions of Tiananmen, remains accessible to Chinese internet users. Outliers like Reddit raise questions about censorship decisions that are tough for even decades-long observers to answer: Why are certain sites blocked or unblocked? What are the guidelines to government censorship?

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