Open main menu

MIT BBS (Chinese: 未名空间; pinyin: Wèimíng Kōngjiān; literally: 'Unnamed Space') is a Chinese bulletin board system site.



The forum was started in 1997 as at Massachusetts Institute of Technology, hence the "MIT" in its name. However, its history can be traced to two earlier forums: the Unknown BBS at Peking University, China from 1996-1997, followed by the Space BBS at Center for Space Science at Chinese Academy of Sciences. Unlike the two precursors which were located in China, the MIT forum is much less affected by Internet censorship in mainland China, and grew in popularity among Chinese students studying abroad.

In 2002, the Chinese government blocked access to the entire domain.[1] Some have speculated that the main reason was to prevent domestic users from accessing the uncensored political discussions on this forum. Eventually, due to the popularity of the forum and bandwidth limitations, the forum was moved from the domain to its own permanent domain at

In 2004, to circumvent the block in place in China, a self-censored server[2] was opened to facilitate access by users in China.

Currently there are about 300 topic groups. The website claims that it has hundreds of thousands of registered users, most of whom are Overseas Chinese, and 51% of their internet traffic is generated from within the US.[3] The forum allows http and telnet access for public postings, private messaging, exclusive groups (clubs) and, most recently, blogging.[citation needed]

Charity on MIT BBSEdit

Users of MIT BBS form a warm-hearted community, and they have been active in many charity activities. For example, they raised over $100, 000 for families in Wenchuan city, Sichuan province in China, who suffered from the catastrophic earthquake in May, 2008.[4][5][6] Recently MIT BBS generously allow OCEF to open an official topic group, mitOCEF, to broadcast about OCEF's mission and activities, as well as fundraising. During the past year, mitOCEF has raised directly from MIT BBS users more than $30,000; while indirectly the number could be much higher.


The forum was started by a handful of volunteers. It was run as non-profit supported by donations and limited advertising. After moving out of, it is now managed by a company located in Beijing, China [7]. Under the current administrator walklooktalk, in the last several years it saw accelerated commercialization, with more prominent space reserved for advertisers, as well as the creation of a spin-off website devoted to Personal advertisement[8]. Almost all of the advertisements on the front page are professional recruiting ads inviting Chinese Americans to work in China.

The administrators claim both increased advertising and upgrades are necessary to keep up with increased traffic and adding popular new features. However, some users dispute their necessity. The technical handling of the upgrades is also questioned.


  1. ^ "China Blocks MIT Web Addresses".
  2. ^ "未名空间.中国". Archived from the original on 2006-02-21.
  3. ^ " Traffic Statistics".
  4. ^ 盛, 媛. "总动员:全美华人华侨踊跃捐助". 搜狐财经. Retrieved 13 March 2013.
  5. ^ "赈济四川地震灾民 美华裔年轻人爱心在网上串连". 新华网. Retrieved 13 March 2013.
  6. ^ "心系四川灾区,北美华人网上积极募捐". 北京周报. 17 May 2008. Retrieved 13 March 2013.
  7. ^ "北京未名空间信息技术有限公司2016最新招聘信息 - 58企业名录". Retrieved 2015-12-14.
  8. ^ "未名交友 (Unknown Space Friendship)".

External linksEdit