IOC: No Chinese Internet Filters During Olympics; All Other Times It's Fine

from the why-just-for-the-olympics? dept

Back in February, a New Yorker story claimed that China was planning to disable its "Great Firewall" for the Olympics, so it may not mean very much to hear that the International Olympic Committee is now demanding that China do exactly that. If the Chinese government was already planning on opening up the internet, it's pretty weak to then demand it anyway. Besides, there does seem to be something rather sketchy about the IOC demanding China drop the firewall just for the Olympics, saying it "would reflect very poorly" on the country. Does it not "would reflect very poorly" on China during the rest of the time as well? It's a cheap ploy for the IOC to demand the filters be taken down just for that period of time. It gives the IOC publicity as standing up to censorship, even though it doesn't care what happens when the Olympics aren't in town.


Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  1.  
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    Hoeppner, Apr 1st, 2008 @ 11:48am

    This deserves a lolcat :P

     

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  2.  
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    Eric, Apr 1st, 2008 @ 12:06pm

    I think you have this wrong.

    I honestly don't think they are trying to make it look like they care about censorship... rather, they are just making sure to *ensure* their profits by guarding against pissing off their advertisers/media that will be paying big bucks to be there.

     

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  3.  
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    TheDock22, Apr 1st, 2008 @ 12:09pm

    I still don't care

    Why should I bother caring if China has a censorship firewall or not? I enjoy freedom and democracy where China is definitely not. Who am I to say what they are doing with their own country is wrong? Also, if people in China really cared about the censorship, they would move.

     

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  4.  
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    Wes, Apr 1st, 2008 @ 12:10pm

    Attentition

    It does bring a bit of attention to the issue though,

    While it is a PR stunt to make the IOC look good, it may draw more public critisizm of the practice.

     

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  5.  
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    Beefcake, Apr 1st, 2008 @ 12:15pm

    Since when...

    ...does the Olympics care about any of it's venues when they aren't in town? As long as their spectacle looks good, the city can throw a coat of paint on the facades along Catherine's route and they're fine with it.

     

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  6.  
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    Davkaus, Apr 1st, 2008 @ 12:18pm

    Re: Attentition

    "While it is a PR stunt to make the IOC look good, it may draw more public critisizm of the practice."

    And that matters? Because if we all say we're outraged, the Chinese government will say "Ah well, those westerners disapprove, we'd better live by their standards"? How about we leave other countries the fuck alone.

    If there western world is so free, how about we give China the freedom to run their country as they see fit. It's amazing, I am able to tell you're American by a single post.

     

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  7.  
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    rbb, Apr 1st, 2008 @ 12:24pm

    It's all about....

    The IOC just wants to make sure they have unrestricted access to their porn during the olmpics...

     

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  8.  
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    Mark, Apr 1st, 2008 @ 12:33pm

    The IOC

    Remember, we're talking about the IOC here -- the same organization that brought the Olympics to Berlin when Hitler was in charge of that country, the same organization that brought the Olympics to Moscow while that country was still ruled by a Communist dictatorship (as opposed to the post-Communist dictatorship it enjoys now). The IOC has a long, long history of looking the other way where repression is concerned, all under the guise of pretending that athletics is above mere politics.

    Oh, by the way, this comment: "Also, if people in China really cared about the censorship, they would move" is possibly the studidest thing I've ever heard. Good work, sir!

     

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  9.  
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    Killer_Tofu (profile), Apr 1st, 2008 @ 12:47pm

    Isn't the IOC ..

    Aren't they the ones who wanted to limit how the athletes / participants could blog?
    Or was that somebody else?

     

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  10.  
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    Ljlego, Apr 1st, 2008 @ 12:52pm

    Re: Re: Attentition

    "It's amazing, I am able to tell you're American by a single post."

    It's amazing, I am able to tell you're an ignoramus by a single post. It's a damn shame too, because I (American, by the way) agree with you to an extent in regards to China. I don't condone the repression of people (mostly because I would be screwed if dissenting wasn't allowed), but if the purpose of a government is to provide for its people, then China could (though they aren't) do a much better job than most Western powers.

     

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  11.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 1st, 2008 @ 1:07pm

    Re: I still don't care

    Actually lots of them don't even know there is a censorship if their English is not good enough to let them get access to websites like newyork times. For those who do realize it,their whole life can be ruined if they move. Compared with censorship,surviving is far more important....if they lose their job and are taken to prison,crash-down of firewall cannot bring them bread...

     

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  12.  
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    asdf, Apr 1st, 2008 @ 1:10pm

    Re: I still don't care

    I love the, "if you dont like it, move" mentality...

     

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  13.  
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    Sherry, Apr 1st, 2008 @ 1:11pm

    Re: Re: I still don't care

    What?My name is "anonymous coward" if I don't put my name?fine...now here I am.

     

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  14.  
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    TheDock22, Apr 1st, 2008 @ 1:20pm

    Re: Re: I still don't care

    Actually lots of them don't even know there is a censorship if their English is not good enough to let them get access to websites like newyork times. For those who do realize it,their whole life can be ruined if they move. Compared with censorship,surviving is far more important....if they lose their job and are taken to prison,crash-down of firewall cannot bring them bread...

    So? Why should I care what another country does. Who am I to say their way of life is wrong and mine is right?

    Unless every person who says we should be against their oppression is willing to go to war and "free" these poor people quit complaining. It has absolutely nothing to do with us.

     

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  15.  
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    Sherry, Apr 1st, 2008 @ 1:32pm

    Re: Re: Re: I still don't care

    Well,I think it's not a question of 'whose' way of living."Theirs" or "ours" doesn't really matter.What matters is that freedom(freedom to know and freedom to speak,etc) should be part of basic human right.No individual or government has the right to blind other people by censorship...

     

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  16.  
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    TheDock22, Apr 1st, 2008 @ 1:55pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: I still don't care

    What matters is that freedom(freedom to know and freedom to speak,etc) should be part of basic human right.No individual or government has the right to blind other people by censorship...

    Why? Because we enjoy freedom and therefore assume everybody will? Who says that people in China are suffering anymore than people in the USA? China has a much lower crime rate than the USA and they even have more people than us. Just because they do things differently does not mean they are wrong in how they run their country.

     

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  17.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 1st, 2008 @ 2:04pm

    Yeah, I guess parking tanks on their citizens is OK.

    I guess we shouldn't have done anything when Hitler decided to kill a bunch of Jews. I guess we shouldn't care what happens in Tibet or Dafur. We ignored Sudan, so hey, whats another genocide?

    Ignore everything just like in WWII until the Germans bombed Pearl Harbor.

     

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  18.  
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    Derek (profile), Apr 1st, 2008 @ 2:08pm

    It was in the contract

    From the report i read, China had agreed to open the internet up to reporters for the period of the Olympic games. Then when the whole Monk uproar happened, they were unsure that China would actually do it. So they re-iterated it.

     

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  19.  
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    TheDock22, Apr 1st, 2008 @ 2:16pm

    Re:

    I guess we shouldn't have done anything when Hitler decided to kill a bunch of Jews.

    Except that he wasn't confined to his own country and we were afraid of the resources he was accumulating and feared he would try to take over the USA. Bad example.

    I guess we shouldn't care what happens in Tibet or Dafur.

    Have we gotten involved yet? Nope...

    We ignored Sudan, so hey, whats another genocide?

    China isn't involved in a genocide...the only reason the Sudan genocide happened was the country was in the midst of a civil war. Did you see any other countries going to their aid. In fact, did anyone come to the USA's aid in our civil war? No, because it doesn't involve them or us.


    Ignore everything just like in WWII until the Germans bombed Pearl Harbor.


    Um...that was Japan. And we dropped a couple nuke's on them...

     

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  20.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 1st, 2008 @ 2:32pm

    Germany? Really?

    "ignore everything just like in WWII until the Germans bombed Pearl Harbor." Well... there goes my faith in humanity.

     

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  21.  
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    Nick Nack, Apr 1st, 2008 @ 2:55pm

    Haha, 'The great Firewall of China' Genuis

     

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  22.  
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    Sal, Apr 1st, 2008 @ 3:15pm

    Re: Re: Attentition

    Does anyone realize that westerners were a main factor in China becoming communist? Both America and Europe screwed China over and they got tired of it. The only difference between Europe and America is that Europe wants to pretend it never did anything because America is the only big player now.

     

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  23.  
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    itsme, Apr 1st, 2008 @ 3:18pm

    Re: I still don't care

    What do you suggest Chinese people do if they "really cared about the censorship"? Move? To where? Do you know anything about this police country? People there from countryside are treated worse than illegal immigrants in the US.

     

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  24.  
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    Goose, Apr 1st, 2008 @ 3:22pm

    Ummm... that article also quotes someone from within the Chinese ministry that says it's still not a done deal to remove the firewall. Slow news day or something Mike? Also, I personally don't give two craps what a sport's association, which is exactly what the IOC is, world views are. Do you go to ESPN to check up on worl news and politics? Didn't think so.

     

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  25.  
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    tony, Apr 1st, 2008 @ 3:52pm

    Re: Did Germany REALLY bomb Pearl Harbor?

    My history books said it was Japan,

    ?!

     

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  26.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 1st, 2008 @ 4:44pm

    dont support china

    lets boycot Olympic games in response to murder of people of tibet and show china we will not be part of their country
    we dont need them they need us i call upon all countrys
    to boycot the games

     

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  27.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Apr 1st, 2008 @ 7:12pm

    Re: Re: Re: I still don't care

    @#14

    What the hell do you mean "It has absolutely nothing to do with us."?! Where do you think the vast majority of the stuff you buy comes from? The truth is, that you, we, are very much invested in the situation. Here in the states there is a lot of talk about the poor conditions in China and how they are so mean to their people, yadda yadda. That only goes so far though because we can get them to make shit for us on the cheap. As long as they keep doing that it's okay.

    I would say that at present the goings on of that country are very much affecting your everyday life, and it's in your best interest to keep at least a casual eye on it.

     

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  28.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 2nd, 2008 @ 6:28am

    Tony, you never watched Animal House?

    What a maroon.

     

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  29.  
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    Nasch, Apr 2nd, 2008 @ 11:04am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: I still don't care

    If there were a country that completely repressed political dissent, arrested and imprisoned people indefinitely without any formal charges, executed 10,000 people a year, and caused severe damage to the environment for decades, would you shrug it off as "doing things differently"?

    I just described China. Taking away peoples' liberty can never be just a different way of doing things, it's unethical. Is there any treatment of a populace that would not qualify as "doing things differently" in your worldview? Was Stalin just doing things differently? Your position seems to be that nobody has any rights, and anything a government wants to do to its people is fine. As long as YOU don't live there.

     

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  30.  
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    Nick nack, Apr 2nd, 2008 @ 3:37pm

    Anonymous Coward, 'you never' READ animal house?

     

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  31.  
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    sexy, Nov 26th, 2008 @ 5:59am

    Re:

     

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