Objective 3: To look at how censorship with regards to the internet is handled and maintained.

China Firewall

Hempel, J. (2012) Facebook’s China Problem. Fortune, 166 (5), pp.103–105.

”The Chinese government has blocked its citizens’ access to the site since 2009. That’s 513 million Chinese Internet users (more than twice the number of wired Americans)”

”Facebook’s most immediate hurdle in China is a communist government that limits free speech”

”Google pulled its search engine out of China altogether in 2010 over concerns about censorship.”

Beam, C.T. (2013) Behind China’s Cyber Curtain. New Republic, 244 (20), pp.5–8.

”China is famous for its Great Firewall, an Internet censorship program designed to filter the results of politically sensitive search terms and block certain websites – Facebook and Twitter and The New York Times are all oŒff limits.”

”Ruoergai, a county near Aba where the Web is also censored, cited two reasons for the outage: the di˜culty of installing Internet and its high cost. The real reason was obvious. He knew that I knew that he knew, but neither of us felt like we could mention it”

Cheng Hua (2012) When an open internet is closed. New Statesman, 141 (5128), pp.12–13

”Any internet media company operating within China’s borders has to face control and censorship from national propaganda organisations”

”However, the government cannot completely control the internet with just these “provisions”, because media websites operating outside Chinese borders are not subject to the restrictions. The Chinese government therefore appointed the president of Beijing University of Posts and
Telecommunications, Fang Binxing, to develop the “Great Firewall” (aka the GF W), to filter uncensored information from outside its borders. As a result, foreign websites criticising the Chinese government became inaccessible in China and website access would reset when CENSORSHIP When an open internet is closed.”
The criteria for censorship are based on a vocabulary indicated by the news censorship departments. For instance, they include words and phrases such as CCP, Jiang, Li, Hu, Wen, central publicity department, democracy, freedom and multiparty system. As soon as a comment uses these words, the system automatically replaces them with “reasonable” opinions or displays the comment as “to be approved”

Pornography

Penny, L. (2013) The genie of unlimited filth is out of the bottle and no law can stop us polishing our lamps. New Statesman, 142 (5161), pp.21–21.

”In May, Mark Bridger was convicted of the murder of April Jones, aged five, and the newspapers, keen to impose an overarching narrative on his sense- less crime, chose to blame internet pornography. It was reported that Bridger had been watching violent porn only hours before he killed April,”

Penny, L. (2011) More sex education, please, and less censorship. New Statesman, 140 (5075), pp.15–15.

”In 11 October, David Cameron unveiled plans to rescue Britain’s children from the swamp of
filth seeping out of every node of the web by forcing internet service providers (ISPs) to offer
an opt-in system for access to adult content.”
”When an Australian government blacklist of adult sites was released by activists, it was found to include many un-smutty sites that someone or other simply didn’t want seen, including the
website of a tour operator and that of a Queensland dentist. With no oversight, the authorities can, in theory, put any site they like on a banned list. Pornography is often used as
an excuse to enact censorship on a wider scale.”
”Children will always look for information about sex, and it discredits our culture that sexual hypocrisy has made the porn industry the default place that young people go to learn about what goes where. This is why I am a defender of decent, unbiased, properly funded sex education, and will continue to fight for a world in which we speak honestly to children and adults about sexuality, contraception and sexual violence. If we want children to grow up in a world in which they can love, learn and experiment without fear of abuse, more education, not more censorship, is the answer.”

(Non Academic)

Daily Mail Reader (2013) Cameron must stand by his pledge on porn. Daily Mail, p.20.

”Preposterously, some even say his default block on obscene sites would filter out educational material on sexual health – or works of fine art such as Rubens’s Rape of the Sabine Women.

This is all smokescreen and sophistry.

Everyone with any common sense knows the kind of disgusting, explicit material the Prime Minister has in mind when he demands that internet giants face up to their moral responsibilities.”

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