Human Rights Sites Censored in ChinaMarch 14, 2007
It’s very common knowledge that Internet Access in China is quite censored. I never knew exactly how much, but always found it heartening when I found a Chinese person stumbling upon a Scientology-related blog of mine, etc — as I never know what content of mine is going to be deemed “subversive” to the Chinese government. Now, you can check such things on http://www.greatfirewallofchina.org/test/ – a site that tries to pull your website down from a server in China, and can tell if it’s blocked or not.
The filter used by the People’s Republic of China is actually the largest firewall and security system in the world, which actively filters all inbound and outbound traffic out of the country of China. Called the Golden Shield Project (which you can get details on from Answers.com) the filter does quite a bit of work to filter your content.
Now, on this site, I tested a few URL’s, just for curiosity. The first one that I would have thought would have been blocked is http://www.freedommag.org – the Scientology publication most outspoken about psychiatry and various human rights abuses. However, this one went through just fine. The CCHR website (also very loudly outspoken about psychiatry) also went through. I guess the Chinese government has no trouble with slamming psychiatry! The Scientology Volunteer Ministers site, also went through without a hitch.
Now, on the other hand, the www.youthforhumanrights.org, a site with some phenomenal public service announcements made to educate people on basic Human Rights, is most assuredly BLOCKED. I guess they consider that as “subversive”. Likewise, L. Ron Hubbard’s common-sense moral code, “The Way to Happiness” is completely blocked. This is no doubt due to the precept in The Way to Happiness of ‘Support a Government Designed and Run for All the People‘. Probably not what they’re looking for.
While the hardware of such a massive proxy system intrigues me as an engineer, I can’t help but think what knowledge and help is being denied the Chinese people by such a filter. Sure, there’s no problem whatever filtering out pornography, etc., but filtering out a moral code which has single-handedly stopped wars and gotten people back together, and has saved nations — that doesn’t seem like a great idea to me.
Comments are very welcome on this one.