Beijing cheated about free web accessWednesday, July 30, 2008 at 13:53 | Posted in censorship, China, internet, Press freedom | 2 Comments
When the Chinese Olympic organizers promised that foreign journalists covering the games would have uncensored access to the Internet, I did not believe for a moment that this would actually happen. It was merely a lip service necessary to get their bid for the games approved. I am now being proven right: the Great Firewall of China curtails the Olympic media center.
Web sites like Amnesty International, Reporters Without Borders and Human Rights Watch are being blocked as well as a number of pro Tibetan sites and basically most contents critical of the pathetic rulers in Beijing. On this clip you can hear a Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman spell out that sites related to Falun Gong are not going to be made accessible. The most outrageous statement is blaming some of the censored sites themselves for being off line. Just click on the links, folks, and see that they are on line.Vodpod videos no longer available.
Among many other sites all of WordPress.com is being censored in China which is why this post can not be read there. Oddly enough, it is possible to post to Blogger in China but not to read Blogger blogs as Blogspot.com is filtered but Blogger.com is not. Totalitarian governments are as inconsistent as they are unreliable.
Granting the Olympic games to China was a huge mistake. The IOC apparently reasoned that the Olympics would prompt China to give in on the human rights issue but we have all way long seen the contrary. It turns out that the IOC themselves have had to give in, according to the BBC:
In an interview with the South China Morning Post, IOC press commission chairman Kevan Gosper apologised for inadvertently misleading journalists over unfettered internet access.
“I’m not backing off what I said. There will be full, open and free internet access during Games time to allow journalists to report on the Olympics,” he told the daily.
“But I have also been advised that some of the IOC officials had negotiated with the Chinese that some sensitive sites would be blocked.”
Which is another reminder that there is no point in bargaining with totalitarian rezimes as they never keep their promises and always tend to cheat.
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