China Says They're Knocking Spammers Offline

from the but-are-they-really? dept

Many spammers have apparently located servers in China, because no one in China seemed to care enough to stop them. That may have just changed, as China has started blocking mail from 127 servers that were used primarily for spam. While those in the antispam world are cheering (as was my first reaction, as well), I wonder if this really is that good. China, of course, has a long history of “blocking” all sorts of political speech. Who knows if, among those 127 servers, some were actually just political opponents? In fact, the article claims that 90 of the 127 servers were actually based in Taiwan, suggesting that this is more politically motivated than simply an attempt at stopping spam. Yes, we need to crack down on spam – but trusting the Chinese government to just block the spam offenders opens up a bunch of other problems.

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Comments on “China Says They're Knocking Spammers Offline”

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Beck says:

Blocking Spam to China

According to the story, they are blocking spam going to chinese computers:

Any e-mails sent from these servers will automatically be blocked from reaching Chinese internet users.

Maybe that’s what it means when it says they are blocking Taiwanese servers – they are not blocking the spam going out, they’re blocking the spam coming in to China.

Must Have Missed Something says:

Did I miss part of the article?

The article does not seem to be about copyright, but about the questionable excuse of “blocking spam”. If a good percentage of the blocked servers are in a country that may be at political odds with the Chinese government, perhaps Mike has a point: how do we know all these servers were originating/relaying spam? The issue Mike seems to be raising is not about blocking per se, but about blocking spam as opposed to blocking dissenting opinions and calling it spam.

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