Great Firewall

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The Great Wall Of China, isn't Great Firewall!

The Great Firewall of China (GFW) is the combination of legislative actions and technologies enforced by the People's Republic of China to regulate the Internet domestically. Its role in the Internet censorship law in China is to block access to selected foreign websites and to slow down cross-border internet traffic. The effect includes: limiting access to foreign information sources, blocking foreign internet tools (e.g. Google search, YouTube, Facebook, Twitter, Wikipedia, and others) and mobile apps, and requiring foreign companies to adapt to domestic regulations. Besides censorship, the GFW has also influenced the development of China's internal internet economy by nurturing domestic companies and reducing the effectiveness of products from foreign internet companies.

Why It's Rotten

  1. Much like Article 13 and SOPA, they block methods such as IP ranges, DNS spoofing, URLs, and more.
  2. They want to censor sites that are linked to Dalai Lama.
  3. They want keywords like "Tiananmen square" and "Xinjiang Reeducation Camp", to be censored.
  4. Many sites are blocked:
    • Search Engines: Google but not Google China, DuckDuckGo and StartPage.
    • Encyclopedias: Wikipedia (but the Chinese one is accessible only via IPV6).
    • News: BBC, The Guardian, The Washington Post, South China Morning Post, Al Jazeera English, Tibet Post. (Interestingly CNN is not blocked)
    • Amazon (Japanese version only) is blocked.
    • Social Websites: Reddit, Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.
    • Nintendo's official site is also blocked simply because they caught the Chinese government copying the idea of Super Mario Bros. without their permission on their website.

Redeeming Qualities

  1. It's easy to bypass with VPNs (such as Hola) and Tor, and you won't likely be arrested for it thankfully, but it's almost always slow and the government's claiming that they're going to block all the VPNs.
  2. Some of the banned websites are hotbeds for violent extremists and deserve to be banned including:

Comments

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