China's President Wants Greater Internet Censorship; Worried About Middle East Uprisings

from the fear-the-internet dept

While some curmudgeons continue to insist that the internet has had nothing (nothing!) whatsoever to do with popular uprisings throughout the middle east, it certainly seems that various governments don't feel the same way. In nearly every case so far, the governments have sought to either crack down on the internet or figure out ways to use it to their advantage. And it appears that China is watching closely. We had already mentioned how the country blocked any mention of Egypt from various microblogging services, in the wake of the uprising there, and now President Hu Jintao is saying that China needs to clamp down on the internet even more. It's believed these new calls for tightening up the Great Firewall are in response to fears that folks in China may take note of the uprisings throughout the Middle East, and seek to copy them in China. 2011 is shaping up to be a very interesting year in terms of people's responses to tyranny.


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    Christopher (profile), Feb 21st, 2011 @ 7:23pm

    I guess China will never learn. Communism does not care about uprisings if it is communism, because the people will only 'revolt' if they aren't all being treated equally.

    But wait.... that is the mean in China today, which is as Plutocratist as the United States when things are honestly discussed.

     

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      crade (profile), Feb 22nd, 2011 @ 10:42am

      Re:

      The people will not only revolt if they aren't all being treated equally. They will only revolt if they are doing poorly. If they are all doing equally poor, the gov will still lose the mandate of heaven (for poor performance, not for being unfair). You will see signs from heaven that the gov has lost the mandate (catastrophies from mismanaged equipment and such) and the people will revolt.

      Plus China isn't communist at all anyway, they are 100% capitilist. I have no idea why they call themselves communist.

       

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    Overcast (profile), Feb 21st, 2011 @ 8:35pm

    I think they are chasing an idealistic dream, where the people are happy with the police state they live in.

    But people, not being the same as machines - will not ever enjoy that.

     

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      Christopher (profile), Feb 21st, 2011 @ 9:22pm

      Re:

      I'd say that China isn't much more of a police state than the United States when it comes down to it. The United States has enough 'laws' on the books that if you sneeze in the wrong place, you could spend time in prison.

       

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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 21st, 2011 @ 8:38pm

    China is one of the only economies that boomed during the great recession and continues to grow.

    Democracy would not help them. They are doing fine the way they are.

    It's typical Jingoism to presume that every country needs democracy. Plenty of countries would fall to pieces if they tried to adopt it. Look at Iraq for example.

     

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      Trails (profile), Feb 21st, 2011 @ 9:15pm

      Re:

      While I agree with you that not every country can convert to democracy overnight, Iraq was a very different thing.

      Iraq had democracy imposed from outside the country. There was no populous groundswell of support. Certainly some were happy to see the Coalition of the Willing arrive, but I'd hazard not most, and certainly not with the "buy-in" a populist uprising would instill.

      One could also argue, quite easily in fact, that China's economic growth has more to do with a "shrinking" world, a surplus of labour, and a market and system that is opening by inches.

      Simply stating China's economy has done well and therefore China as a country should keep doing what they're doing is overly simplistic.

       

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      Atkray (profile), Feb 21st, 2011 @ 9:24pm

      Re:

      "China is one of the only economies that boomed during the great recession and continues to grow."

      Proving that a lack of respect for international IP laws and having children work for pennies a day is the best way to drive your economy?

      BUT.... PIRATES!!!

      BUT.... THINK OF THE CHILDREN!!

       

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        Anonymous, Feb 21st, 2011 @ 11:35pm

        Re: Re:

        Of course taking advantage of and ripping off 1st world inventiveness and ignoring Western labor principles is a good way to get ahead.

        It's not fair to the Western creators or those who toil in sweatshops, but it is effective.

        If I was in charge of China, I wouldn't change much.

        I would do exactly what they are doing.

        And on the subject of IP, they are making gestures towards IP enforcement (eg. their new piracy blacklist law is quite strict).

         

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          The eejit (profile), Feb 22nd, 2011 @ 2:31am

          Re: Re: Re:

          Just wait until they start enforcing it on Apple and MS.

           

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          Anonymous Coward, Feb 22nd, 2011 @ 6:28am

          Re: Re: Re:

          You're only jealous because they do it better than the US.

          That's the real sticking point: that they can get away with it because they have the populace under control whereas you and your cronies chaff at the freedoms Americans have - laws they hide behind and questions they make you answer.

          You pretend to condemn them but it's just sour grapes.

           

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          Anonymous Coward, Feb 22nd, 2011 @ 7:02am

          Re: Re: Re:

          China right now is very close to hitting the perfect balance, allowing their citizens plenty of freedom, while at the same time not tolerating the type of dissent that undermines and destroys all that has been accomplished.

          Imagine the US for a moment if the Republican's would actually allow the Democrats to govern, rather than spending years fighting about what cannot be fixed.

           

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          Chris Rhodes (profile), Feb 22nd, 2011 @ 7:25am

          Re: Re: Re:

          Democracy would not help them. They are doing fine the way they are.

          It's not fair to the Western creators or those who toil in sweatshops, but it is effective.

          So living under a dictatorship is good if China's economy is doing well, but disregarding IP law is bad for doing the same.

          Nice to know you have your priorities straight there.

           

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            Anonymous, Feb 22nd, 2011 @ 10:03am

            Re: Re: Re: Re:

            I just said both are good for China. Both are also bad.

            Ripping off IP hurts Western creators.
            Forcing sweat shop conditions hurts workers.

            But they are still both good for the country in its current form and contribute to its competitiveness in the world market.

            And they are improving in both areas as well as their wealth increases.

             

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          crade (profile), Feb 22nd, 2011 @ 10:58am

          Re: Re: Re:

          The chinese people can stand up for their rights. They have a long history of doing so. If the people don't like the way they are being treated it won't last anyway.
          Not fair? That you don't get to set the rules that the world competes in? Boo frickin hoo. Bring on the competition I say.

           

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      Adam Bell, Feb 22nd, 2011 @ 7:20am

      Re: China Clampdown

      From my read of events in China, democracy, per se, is not what motivates them -- corruption is. Seems to be a strong element of that in the arab countries as well.

       

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        crade (profile), Feb 22nd, 2011 @ 11:10am

        Re: Re: China Clampdown

        According to confucius theory, too much corruption within government will be it's own downfall. Democracy isn't neccessary to ensure a fair and good government because the bad ones will fail and die.

         

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    Trails (profile), Feb 21st, 2011 @ 9:10pm

    Let me correct your title

    "China's president wants more bubble gum and duct tape, worried about approaching tidal wave"

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 21st, 2011 @ 9:24pm

    US's President Wants Greater Internet Censorship; Worried About Middle East Uprisings

    Title says it all.

     

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    Pixelation, Feb 21st, 2011 @ 10:32pm

    Umm, no

    How about..."China's President Wants Greater Internet Censorship; Worried About uprising in China".

    Likely they could give a crap about what is happening in the middle east if it doesn't spread to China.

     

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    Noel Coward, Feb 21st, 2011 @ 10:37pm

    Ignorance is Bliss

    All the morons who think the internet is the driver in all the uprisings around the world, need to pull their collective heads out their rear.

    People revolt because they've had enough, they just need an excuse and to organize. The internet has provided this, but more so a window of comparison.

    China is doomed, as has been every other human revolution on earth through out history. Secular or other wise, these deluded visions of UTOPIA NEVER eventuate and people wake up one day and smell the roses on the other side of the world.

    Did the French revolution work? How about the Russian?
    How about any you care to name?

    China's wealth exists in smoke and mirrors. 5 Years ago the average Chinese made just over 3.5k per annum. Now its just over the 5K P/A. WOW!
    Like that should be admired, even Apple's greedy lot couldn't look themselves in the mirror when they realize child labor was being used in their plants.

    Any country that suppresses people beliefs and pushes the atheist agenda by replacing it with a UTOPIAN dream needs to be reviled.

    The world has forgotten this is a COMMUNIST REGIME!
    WHY? $$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$

    It's so easy to see what the west has replaced their GOD with.

     

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    Aerilus, Feb 21st, 2011 @ 11:28pm

    I don't get the logic.

    people in the Middle east rebel because of repressive government.

    china: we need more repression to keep people from rebelling

    makes perfect sense to me

     

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    Mr Big Content, Feb 21st, 2011 @ 11:46pm

    Democracy Is All Very Well ...

    ... but it shouldnít be happening in countries that are important strategic allies to the USA. These people donít realize that their existing Governments are crucial to maintaining the current world order, and their actions to overthrow them are irresponsibility of the highest order.

    Where is the CIA in all this? They know what they should be doing; why arenít they doing it?

     

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      Anonymous Coward, Feb 22nd, 2011 @ 6:41am

      Re: Democracy Is All Very Well ...

      I presume this is supposed to be funny but it's far too close to the truth to just be random satire.

      I mean, it's well documented from declassified info how the US has tried to prevent middle-eastern, and latin-american, nations from achieving democracy. The US has no problem backing dictators and tyrants in slaughtering their own people when it benefits their agenda. They have a long history of doing so and the people in those countries see the US actions as terrorism (which it is btw). However a dictator has the nation in his grasp through force and violence and the US likes that as it's useful and much easier to handle.

       

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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 22nd, 2011 @ 1:11am

    Are you serious?

    Are you being sarcastic? Or do you really believe country's around the world should suspend the rights of their people for the sake of the united states???? I'm just curious...

     

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    BongoBern, Feb 22nd, 2011 @ 6:57am

    Internet Crackdowns

    This whole "kill switch" idea that floats around like a whiff of sewer gas, and Congress's paranoia, worry me. A free society deserves a free Internet. In fact every society deserves a free Internet. If necessary I can understand isolating a portion of the Internet, airline traffic computers if threatened, for instance, but don't enable anyone to shut down the entire Internet! The system design may be faulty and need some serious upgrades to isolate various portions, like a grid.

     

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    MAC, Feb 22nd, 2011 @ 8:23am

    China...

    Evil is evil no matter what kind of pretty face you put on it.
    Example:
    Lucifer (aka Satan), is one of the most beutiful beings ever created.
    Unfortunately looks are deceiving.
    So it is with China. They may look good from the outside but it's still the same old totalitarian, Stalinist mentality. All shiny on the outside but corroded and corrupted inside.

     

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      crade (profile), Feb 22nd, 2011 @ 10:47am

      Re: China...

      Actually China's pretty nice. It sounds like maybe you never looked from the inside so you have no idea what it's like. Really nice people over there. Great place. They are trying out a different setup than the U.S. of course, it's really new and might not be the right fit for them but if not they will certainly change it. Not perfect maybe (who is) but really nice. I really recommend learning mandarin and making the trip.

       

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      Trails (profile), Feb 22nd, 2011 @ 3:21pm

      Re: China...

      "Lucifer (aka Satan), is one of the most beutiful beings ever created."

      A REAL example might work better. Referring to Sauron, Lucifer, Megatron or other fictional bad guys undermines any point you're trying to make.

       

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        Anonymous Coward, Feb 22nd, 2011 @ 6:31pm

        Re: Re: China...

        A REAL example might work better. Referring to Sauron, Lucifer, Megatron or other fictional bad guys undermines any point you're trying to make.

        Ignore the man behind the curtain? Yeah, Satan likes that.

         

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    John Nemesh, Feb 22nd, 2011 @ 8:24am

    Fear will keep these systems in line!

    "The more you tighten your grip, the more systems will slip through your fingers..." :)

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 22nd, 2011 @ 8:28am

    China's next and they know it.

     

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    Jon Marks, Feb 23rd, 2011 @ 9:53am

    Its really sad that China is doing this. The best way to get around all the new censorship is with a Virtudom VPN account!

     

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    SSL VPN, Feb 23rd, 2011 @ 9:59am

    Its really sad that China is doing this. The best way to get around all the new censorship is with a Virtudom VPN account!
    I bought one the other day and love it! It works in ANY country!

     

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