Goojje Shuts Down After Being Targeted By Hackers, Google’s Threat Not The Main Reason

On January 12th, Google said in a blog post that it had stop censoring search results for and may pull out of mainland China if both the search engine juggernaut and the Chinese authorities fail to come to an agreement. Soon after the news broke out, a group of about eight people around the country have developed a spoof of called Goojje. In response to that, Google has sent a warning to the Chinese Google knockoff to stop using their logo. The U.S. search engine giant claimed that the Goojje logo is infringing on its trademark since the logo could be mistaken as an authorized Google web site.

Today, Goojje put up a notice saying that it has ceased its operations and thanked the fans who have been supporting the site for the past month. Apparently, the team claimed that the main reason behind the closure of the site was because Goojje had been targeted by hackers for nearly five consecutive days, and no word about Google’s threat to sue was mentioned in the post. No hints about who the hackers were and the intention behind it made me feel rather dubious. Could it be Google themselves? Or could it be just a fairytale to save some pride? And what baffled me was that hours before the shut down, China Daily reported that Goojje will not change its design despite Google’s threat to sue it over copyright infringement.

“The website is our team’s achievement,” Huang, the founder and team leader of Goojje, told the newspaper company over the phone. “It’s impossible that we would close it down.” The team has invested less than 30,000 yuan ($4,400) for the website’s set-up, said Huang. “A lot of lawyers have offered to be our counsel for free, and we also have many supporters,” he added.

Below is the translated summary of the original post the team has published on Goojje. I have done the translation all by myself as I don’t really trust the accuracy of Google Translate.

To our beloved Google fans and the media:

First of all, we would like to express our gratitude to the media and our beloved Google fans for their continuous support for the past one month. Unfortunately, targets by anonymous hackers for past five consecutive days have forced us to shut down Goojje. Throughout these five days, we have gone through a lot and thoughts of whether to close the site ran through our minds.

Although we may have big aspirations for Goojje, but the recent hacks hindered us from bringing the search engine to the next level. No matter who the hacker/s was/were, we just want to say that we will not give up our goals and will strive for the better. We believe that today’s China young generation has the will to pursue our ambitions. We are glad that we have encountered failures this time round. Each failure spurs us on further, faster, and higher.

We plan to change a new server and ask for your patience. We intend to bring Goojje back again. (And the post continues with a lot of “thanks for your support”)

Goojje, we will always be together forever.