Bashing Baidu, China’s largest internet search engine, has become almost a sport among Chinese social media users. The company has been called “the greatest evil of human nature” and a “human-eating machine”—not your average complaints from annoyed tech users.

The latest example illustrates just how keen has become Baidu to defend its reputation: GQ Daily, the Chinese edition of lifestyle magazine GQ, sparked the ire of the tech titan by inviting their WeChat followers to describe their misadventures with Baidu services. The company acted promptly by suing them for RMB 5 million.

What seems like a slight overreaction on Baidu’s side has deeper and darker roots. GQ Daily poked fun at Baidu after a social media post revealed that Baidu Maps search results offered the address of a private hospital run by the controversial Putian Medical Group instead of a state hospital.

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Masha Borak

Masha Borak is a technology reporter based in Beijing. Write to her at masha.borak [at] technode.com. Pitches with the word "disruptive" will be ignored. Read a good book - learn some more adjectives.