Bilibili starts showing users IP location

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The mobile version of Bilibili, a Chinese video streaming platform, has started displaying users’ IP locations on their profile page and info pages on July 25, along with the comments they posted. However, the web version has yet to launch this feature.

The feature will display general user location information (provinces and urban areas) for China-based users, while overseas users’ IP locations will display country information. Users will not be able to disable location identification.

Since March, the Chinese social media platform Weibo, news platforms like Toutiao and Zhihuinternet giant Baiduas good as TencentWeChat official accounts have started showing IP location information.

Currently, the display of IP location data is not standard across the country. The Internet User Account Information Management Regulations, which will come into force on August 1, clearly state that Internet information service providers must display the IP location of users within a reasonable range, in order to facilitate public oversight.

Some netizens support the launch of this feature, believing that it will make the network environment much cleaner, while others are concerned about privacy. In fact, the feature displays users’ general location information, instead of a specific location such as the community the user lives in. Therefore, users need not worry about privacy disclosures.

SEE ALSO: Chinese social media site Weibo begins displaying users’ IP addresses

Moreover, the gray industrial chain of purchasing proxy IP services to cover their actual locations has emerged after major internet platforms moved to China. An IP proxy is a telecommunications service model born to solve the problem of encryption and acceleration of network activity. It requires authorization and qualification to engage in related services. However, the arbitrary modification of the IP location may lead to illegal theft of users’ privacy, fraud and disruption of network order.

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