hergameplay.wordpress.com does not exist.

22 Jul

NO, not really but if I am living in China, this might be the case.

A number of blogs have been suddenly shut down by the Chinese government recently.  According to The Associated Press, this is the government’s way to control social networking and information flow. But why? :-/

Always guarded by walls

There's another one! but it's not really the bulky, thick type.

Some of the blogs and microblogs that have been closed are from outspoken people who share their thoughts on sensitive issues. Government officials said that these issues might go out of hand because of the growing number of Chinese Internet (especially those who use social networking sites) users.  China has around 420 million Internet users as of now. The republic has been known for its keen eye on filtering and monitoring the Internet to protect its citizens from “harmful” information. As for their definition of “harmful”, I have no idea what their criteria are.I have read though that Internet content providers need to follow the government’s guidebook and make sure that all information on the Internet available in China is good and safe for the Chinese. Last year, the country has removed Twitter and Facebook from their system. According to Xiao Qiang, director of the China Internet Project at the University of California-Berkeley, microblogs stir up quite critical opinion from the citizens which scares the officials if we add to that the speedy and far-fetched features of microblogs. Scared much? 😛

No sweet escape?

Gwen Stefani will be happy if there is. 😀

Oh we can never be sure when it comes to controlling THE Internet. Even though the Chinese government can filter all the search engines and blog sites, THERE ARE STILL WAYS TO GET THROUGH THE GREAT WALL OF CHINA (of course, we’re speaking of the virtual wall: P). According to Wang Chen, director of the State Council Information Office, “As long as our country’s Internet is linked to the global Internet, there will be channels and means for all sorts of harmful foreign information to appear on our domestic Internet.” See, we can never detach ourselves from the Internet, from the mighty global Internet. And people can still access  information including the “harmful” types by using a different proxy servers or private networks. With the ever advancement of  technology and even if a great wall tries to block, The Internet will always be one step ahead of us.

The wall looks like a bubble.

To blow or to pop?

Seriously.  It reminds me of the movie, Bubble Boy, where a boy was born without an immune system thus must stay in a bubble to protect him from contamination. The Chinese government is trying to put the country in a bubble to protect it from “harmful” information that might contaminate the Chinese people’s minds. In the movie, something or rather someone (chloe, err the girl he loves ;)) urged the bubble boy to get out of his bubble. In China’s case, there will always be a pressure from the other side of the wall. Something will make the Chinese people to get out of the bubble, perhaps a realization that  their freedom for expression is under attack? Maybe, but we are still far from the ending and must take our seats and wait for the bubble to burst or for the wall to crumble. 😉

see related stories here and here too. 😉





6 Responses to “hergameplay.wordpress.com does not exist.”

  1. Lara Gonzales July 22, 2010 at 5:33 pm #

    Nice title Patti. 🙂

    I believe Google had already left China because of all the restrictions the Chinese government had imposed on it.

    It’s sad that their government does this to control whatever information that could be used against them. If they’re not afraid of something, why would they be this strict?

    • patpetpitpotput July 23, 2010 at 3:20 pm #

      Thanks Lara! 🙂

      Yep, I’ve read it too. In this article though (http://news.cnet.com/8301-27080_3-20001212-245.html), James Fallows, national correspondent for “The Atlantic” magazine said that there would be really little effect on the Chinese people with regard to removing Google from China’s computer system because they are more fond of searching funny videos or the less serious type of things in the Internet rather than political issues or some sort of serious information.

      I agree. Guilty much? I will salute to them if ever they will succeed in filtering each and every piece of information in their system. Haha 😛

  2. Karen July 25, 2010 at 8:04 am #

    Yes, China implements strict rules concerning the use of the Internet. But in my opinion, there will come a time when people would actually do something to break free from those suffocating walls the Chinese government built around them. The forces which could possibly break the barriers should not only come from the other side of the wall, but also from within.

    We discussed yesterday how we (the NetGen) could influence the senior members of the organization to use the new social media, maybe the Chinese could use those tips shared in class to influence their strict government.

  3. Jenny July 27, 2010 at 12:26 pm #

    hi patti! 🙂
    The internet censorship in China is something that I don’t want to happen here in the Philippines. I guess the government of China is afraid that its constituents will unite and collaborate through the use of internet to oust those in power. So there is no other way but to forbid them from voicing out their sentiments or criticisms. Indeed, their prime minister is an epitome of a Machiavellian leader. I read an article saying that China tops the list of countries with the largest recorded number of imprisoned journalists and cyber-dissidents.
    Your post reminded me of the case study we had in class last. 🙂

  4. commbustiblethoughts September 30, 2010 at 5:32 am #

    I believe that this kind of censorship is a substantiation of the authorities’ abuse of power. Governments and other authorities who have power can use censorship to distort facts or hide truths from ordinary citizens. It violates the public’s “right to know” and the people’s access to information that vitally affects the lives of citizens. It is part of the people’s rights to have the freedom of opinion and expression. When censorship is occurs, ordinary citizens will not be able to formulate informed conclusions; instead they will base their opinions on blind assumptions and uneducated guesses. Hopefully, this will not happen here in our beloved country where democracy is the foundation of our society. 🙂

  5. chocostraws October 2, 2010 at 2:39 pm #

    watch your words Jen, or else you may find yourself kidnapped one day. 🙂

    Well, at least in the Philippines, ex-Pres. GMA did not do a desperate action like that.

    What the government did is a wrong way of addressing issues. Sadly they don’t know that the essence of communication lies in the feedback, because only through feedback that the sender can actually evaluate whether the communication is successful. By banning those blogs and putting activists behind the bars,they are losing the benefit of feedback.

    Anyway, bureaucratic organizations are by nature unminding of feedback.

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