24 January 2018
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  • » 01/09/2018, 13.56


    Official data on internet censorship

    Wang Zhicheng

    In 2017, 128 thousand sites were blocked, 30.9 million books confiscated; 1900 people arrested and punished. The "USSR syndrome".

    Beijing (AsiaNews) - Throughout 2017, authorities for Internet control have shut down 128,000 sites, according to state agency Xinhua, in a report underlining the "dangerous" nature of the blocked sites.

    In addition, to combatting "pornography and illegal publications", in the last year the censors confiscated 30.9 million publications and arrested and punished 1900 people. Among the sites that have long been blocked there is also AsiaNews.it.

    China has the largest number of internet users (over 700 million) and applies spasmodic control over content and the dissemination of unauthorized news.

    Information and facts that are subject to censorship range from "mass incidents" (demonstrations, revolts, strikes, etc ...), to ethnic and religious issues, to criticism of the Chinese Communist Party.

    Several Internet sites hosted by major providers such as Tencent, Baidu, Weibo, last year were fined for not censoring content that discussed the issues of the Party Congress, held last October. In November and December, all the news concerning the expulsion of migrants from the suburbs of Beijing were wiped from the internet.

    Internet censorship grew with Xi Jinping's coming to power five years ago. In addition to the firewall - the filter that does not allow Chinese customers to receive news and data from abroad on issues such as democracy, Tibet, the Tiananmen massacre, religious issues, etc ... - for several months the Vpn (Virtual Private Network) that allowed the Chinese to bypass the Firewall have also been under control.

    The government continues to defend its policy for the "good of the people" and for "social stability", but critics say that the control serves only to exclude any criticism of the Party. According to many scholars, the Party is suffering from "USSR syndrome", the failure of communism after allowing glasnost (transparency) and revision of history. To avoid the fate of the USSR, China is increasingly stepping up its social control.

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    See also

    23/01/2017 10:08:00 CHINA
    Beijing strengthens Great Firewall, private networks illegal

    As of yesterday, private connections will need government approval to be able to access the internet. To date, the country has more than 730 million users.


    05/12/2017 13:49:00 CHINA
    Ambiguous praise for Xi Jinping and web control at the World Internet Conference

    More than 1,500 representatives from 80 countries took part in the event. China’s president offers greater openness to online markets, but reiterates Chinese sovereignty in cyberspace. China’s internet is the most controlled in the world, but also the most developed.

    10/05/2010 CHINA
    More and more Internet users getting around China’s censorship
    A prominent blogger conducts a survey among mainland Internet users who go to banned sites. He finds that would-be wall scalers are not opponents of the authorities but people who want to work online. They represent a huge potential market.

    19/05/2011 CHINA
    Shoes and eggs against the Father” of Chinese censorship
    Fan Binxing, the inventor of the Great Firewall that blocks and filters the Internet, was hit by a shoe. An egg however, missed the target. A twitter user claims responsibility.

    10/01/2018 09:44:00 CHINA
    Apple 'sells' iCloud data to Chinese company

    The transition will take place on February 28th and will only concern users in China. A company owned by the Guizhou government will have access to the data. The technological giant ensures respect for privacy. A new way for Beijing to control citizens and residents in China.

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