Internet users of China have been reporting about a whole lot of blog shutdowns. In what some of the bloggers say, seems to be the latest effort of the government to further tighten the controls on free expression and exert greater authority over the country’s rapidly growing Internet, which is simultaneously growing more and more complex.
The situation was further aggravated when the sites of many prominent bloggers, and even that of Pu Zhiqiang, who is known for being an outspoken attorney, suddenly became inaccessible.
Yao Yuan is an active blogger who had listed dozens of other blogs written by the free speaking lawyers and writers, and many others hosted by Sohu.com Inc. He said the accounts became inaccessible on, as per the Associated Press reporting, the blogger is quoted referring the closures as an Internet “mass murder.”
The complaints poured down as concerns grew among the Chinese Internet users community about China’s burgeoning microblogging services suffering a crack down, after a slurry of odd goof-ups disrupted the access to many websites ,some of which were as popular as Twitter this week. Naturally apprehensions and theories behind the probable cause, is growing by the minute.
It’s however still not clear whether Chinese Government, which has the authority to block foreign websites and also regulate local Internet content, are actually behind the extensive blog closures. Mr. Pu, who is an attorney, well known for being outspoken, said he was not even given any warning before his site stopped working. He said that they should have notified him stating what’s wrong with his blog. According to him it’s unfair to the point of injustice and the practice lacks transparency. Because this isn’t the first time that it happened. Pu concludes that this is because he speaks his mind and the Chinese govt is not very comfortable with truth.
Chinese government officials remained unavailable for comment.
It is true that China’s censorship has grown very strong in the last couple of years. A rapidly increasing number of foreign websites has been promptly blocked, so users within the country cannot access it.
The world also witnessed many government generated campaigns which were probably aimed at clamping down the mobile websites. Officials have also tightened the grip of scrutiny over Web domain names which are registered in China, and they also stepped up the oversight of companies dealing with online media, by few notches. The final summary of all these efforts?? Thousands of websites have closed down, the list of such websites include Fanfou, a Chinese microblogging service and online video websites.
Much before the latest problems reared its ugly head, blogs and microblogging services which were hosted by the Chinese websites were always getting monitored by the stringent website operators, and the politically sensitive contents were sorted out. In China, access to Twitter and to other foreign services which hosts blog services including popular ones like Google Inc.’s
With this amount of growing restrictions, which came along with Google’s decision of ceasing to cooperate with Chinese censorship regulations this year, have increased acutely the awareness of censorship amidst China’s Internet using milieu which is around 420 million.