LinkedIn is shutting down its Chinese site after drawing criticism for censoring profiles with content considered offensive to the country’s government

Chinese president xi jinping
Chinese leader Xi Jinping Xinhua/Rao Aimin via Getty Images
  • LinkedIn is ending its localized version in China, replacing it with a site without a social feed.
  • It had blocked accounts of reporters and researchers sharing content considered offensive to the CCP.
  • LinkedIn is the last big American social media site operating in China, the WSJ reports.

LinkedIn is shutting down its local version in China after coming under fire for censoring accounts in the country that shared content considered offensive to China’s government.

The company, which is owned by Microsoft, said in a blog post on Thursday that it will sunset the localized version later this year.

“While we’ve found success in helping Chinese members find jobs and economic opportunity, we have not found that same level of success in the more social aspects of sharing and staying informed,” the post reads. “We’re also facing a significantly more challenging operating environment and greater compliance requirements in China.”

LinkedIn says it will replace the localized site, which launched in 2014, with InJobs. This will strictly be a jobs application site; it won’t have a social feed or the ability to share posts or articles.

“Our new strategy for China is to put our focus on helping China-based professionals find jobs in China and Chinese companies find quality candidates,” the post continued.

LinkedIn is the last big American social media site running in China, the Wall Street Journal reports.

The platform made headlines earlier this year for censoring profiles of users who shared “prohibited content.” In June, writer and photographer Jojje Olsson was told by LinkedIn that he had to remove mention of the Tiananmen Square massacre from his profile or his account would be hidden from view in China.

At the time, LinkedIn said, “It’s clear to us that in order to create value for our members in China and around the world, we will need to implement the Chinese government’s restrictions on content, when and to the extent required.”

Last month, LinkedIn blocked accounts of journalists and researchers on its Chinese site whose profiles contained content considered offensive to the ruling Chinese Communist Party, as Insider’s Katie Canales reported.

LinkedIn told those affected users, “While we strongly support freedom of expression, we recognized when we launched that we would need to adhere to the requirements of the Chinese government in order to operate in China.”