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Communications Censorship Government News Technology

China Blocks More Internet Services 69

Posted by timothy
from the how-totally-amazing dept.
Dave writes "China continues to block more and more popular services. This week they blocked iTunes and YouTube, and now it's TringMe, a popular VoIP 2.0 service. From TringMe's Blog: 'We received close to hundred complaints from our China users that TringMe services is not accessible from yesterday. We have found after our investigation that TringMe is blocked by Chinese government. Earlier China blocked Skype and now they are turning their eye to TringMe. TringMe is extremely popular in China and we have a large number of paying customers in China including a Chinese social network with 3 million users using TringMe's API & services.'"
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China Blocks More Internet Services

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  • Yikes! They got slashdot!
  • by Anonymous Coward
    Perhaps the western world should block China from the internet.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Raistlin77 (754120)
      Something tells me the Chinese government would love nothing more than for that to happen.
      • Re:Block China? (Score:5, Insightful)

        by sakdoctor (1087155) on Wednesday August 27, 2008 @03:40PM (#24770187) Homepage

        Precisely why we shouldn't.
        Cultural imperialism is our most effective weapon, and for it to work we need all channels as open as possible.

        Let a country completely wall itself off and you end up with North Korea, where the general population's world view in no way resembles the actual physical reality.

        • World View (Score:4, Insightful)

          by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday August 27, 2008 @05:31PM (#24771543)

          Let a country completely wall itself off and you end up with North Korea, where the general population's world view in no way resembles the actual physical reality.

          And this is different from religious America how?

          • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

            by Bryansix (761547)
            In every way possible. People in the United States are constantly having their world view challenged. Look at how Gay Rights is such an important issue now. If things were as you imply then there would not be anything near Gay Rights because there would be no discussion on the matter.
            • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

              by Anonymous Coward

              Good point. Of course, I wasn't implying America is as bad as North Korea.

              My point was that "world views that in no way resemble the actual physical reality" are not only found in countries like North Korea. In America, and increasingly in Europe too, we see things like anti-terrorism measures that violate people's privacy without actually providing any security. And that's just one stupid example off the top of my head. Just because things aren't as bad as in North Korea doesn't mean there's nothing wr

          • And this is different from religious America how?

            Opposing views exist in the United States, and censorship is limited to indirect, ineffective measures. I can walk around and ask people their opinions about Bush, and I'll get several different answers, many of which won't be very flattering (to put it lightly). I don't think very many people would tell me that the birds would mourn when his father died. Back when he was popular, one or two people might have said that he was "given directions by God", but it

    • Re:Block China? (Score:4, Interesting)

      by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday August 27, 2008 @04:01PM (#24770471)

      Perhaps the western world should block China from the internet.

      Here's a better plan: on all pages with scientific and technical information-- which is to say, the stuff that the Chinese leaders want their people to be able to access-- embed somewhere in the page some of the keywords that trigger the firewall filters-- stuff like "free Tibet" and "Say Yes to Falun Gong" and the names of the Tiananmen Square [wikipedia.org] June 4th protesters (in Chinese).

      Make their own firewall block the internet.

      • Great idea. After all, we all know that denying people access to knowledge and keeping them stupid is the best way to help them free themselves from oppression.
  • Not really blocked (Score:2, Informative)

    by PlatyPaul (690601)
    From TFA (the 2nd of 2 paragraphs, where the 1st was in TFS):

    However, good part is that TringMe is not completely blocked and you can still access TringMe in China by adding tringme.com to your hosts file. If you are Windows user, hosts file is located in C:\WINDOWS\system32\drivers\etc directory. For Linux users, it is located in /etc directory. We also have other workarounds for our users to access TringMe serivces and we will publish those too if requires. We will try best to let our chinese users â

    • by RiotingPacifist (1228016) on Wednesday August 27, 2008 @03:25PM (#24770033)

      We already know chinas blocks are easy to get around, its about control more than anything. if something is 'blocked' people don't talk about it.

    • Wait, what? (Score:1, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward

      > If you can still use it this way, it's not really blocked.

      Isn't that like saying that if you can pick the lock, the door wasn't really locked?

      I mean, where exactly do you expect them to find out which IP they're supposed to put into their hosts file?

  • Back to normal now that the Olympics are over. Honestly, did anyone expect otherwise?
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      The best time to enact unpopular laws is when national pride is at an all-time high.

    • It was different while the olympics were on? All I saw was a shiny, pretty, smiling face on what was the same old country the whole time. They didn't unblock internet, they still beat people up and arrested dissidents, and they put people out of work in droves.

      What really pissed me off is that newspeople didn't scream about how dumb it was to give them the olympics at all.
  • by megamerican (1073936) on Wednesday August 27, 2008 @03:06PM (#24769827)

    The UK is doing its best to censor the internet any way they can. Londonâ(TM)s St. Pancras International has been censoring [infowars.com] alternative news websites through their wi-fi for at least a month. While I see plenty of news articles about Chinese censorship, I didn't see the UK censorship anywhere else.

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by strelitsa (724743) *
      Well, in Britain you're free to utilize another company other than St. Pancras International if you don't like their blocking policies. OTOH, in China you're perfectly free to warmly embrace the blocking policies, as well as being free to attend any of the myriad re-educational soirees held by the Chinese government. I heard they have cookies.
    • by LighterShadeOfBlack (1011407) on Wednesday August 27, 2008 @03:24PM (#24770021) Homepage

      There's a very big difference between blocking certain sites on a single public wi-fi service and blocking all internet access to a site or service from within an entire country.

      And just for the record that site you linked to is complete bullshit. It doesn't even verify that the sites were blocked intentionally, didn't ask them for comment to explain or investigate, and doesn't even provide confirmation of who is responsible for running the St. Pancras International wifi network. It's entirely possible its privately managed and the government doesn't even determine what gets blocked and what doesn't.

      But who cares about facts when you've got conspiracy theories and vitriol?

      • by mikael (484)

        Virgin media seem to have their own little firewall targeting a selection of sites. I came across the configuration page that allow users to block the following websites:

        Encyclopedia Brittanica
        freeloader.com
        LEGO
        tweenies.com
        expresso education
        sonicselector
        musicchoice
        newsplayer.com
        napster
        vidzone
        metaboli
        photobox
        Premium Games from Virgin Media

        I never understood why anyone would want to block Encyclopedia Brittanica or LEGO?

  • Does this mean music people paid for will no longer work because it can't connect to the iTunes DRM server?
    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      iTunes doesn't contact DRM servers every time you play a file. It contacts them once, when you purchase and download a file. If you move the file to a new computer which has never seen your iTunes account before, then you have to contact the servers again to authorize that computer on your iTunes account.

      So you'd be prevented from moving the files to a new computer, but you wouldn't be prevented from playing them back on the equipment that you had already authorized.

    • Not like it matters... DRM is going down the drain. Sony BMG, one of the most avid supporters os DRM from the start, is dropping it completely. http://www.businessweek.com/technology/content/jan2008/tc2008013_398775.htm [businessweek.com]
  • by Atario (673917) on Wednesday August 27, 2008 @03:16PM (#24769943) Homepage

    ...what the hell is VoIP 2.0?

    Now with all-new Buzzword Compliance Module?

  • Did you ever think that the reason they do this is so when shat starts hitting the fan in China, no one will be able to cry out because they will have no communication with the outside world?

    I dunno...Just a thought.

    • by Chyeld (713439)

      The fan has been coated with several layers of excrement in China for a long time now. And for the most part, no one has really noticed. They don't need to shut anything down for that, because the only people who have access to the internet are the ones who aren't dealing with the famines and abject poverty.

      This is purely about control and the fact that the Chinese government shuts down anything they don't feel they can control.

  • 2008 (Score:2, Insightful)

    by darkheart22 (909279)
    who controls the past controls the future who controls the present controls the past and who controls the internet controls past,future and present. o tempora o mores...
    • by spun (1352)

      who controls the past controls the future
      who controls the present controls the past
      and who controls the internet controls past,future and present.
      o tempora o mores...

      Who is on first rickrolls What is on second. Oh Tempura s'mores...

  • Nothing but spam (Score:4, Insightful)

    by LargeWu (766266) on Wednesday August 27, 2008 @05:25PM (#24771419)

    notice the related stories...
      Firehose:China Blocks More Internet Services by tringme (1352127)

    looking at tringme's profile, he joined....TODAY! What a coincidence. Who cares if it's banned in China, he just wants to spam his service to slashdot.

    • by Eighty7 (1130057)
      or you could have read the summary

      TringMe is extremely popular in China and we have a large number of paying customers in China including a Chinese social network with 3 million users using TringMe's API & services.'"

      He wasn't exactly trying to hide it.

    • by hweimer (709734)

      Who cares if it's banned in China, he just wants to spam his service to slashdot.

      And probably not even true. Internet censorship in China is usually done via fake RST packets [quantenblog.net], not via DNS manipulations.

  • And I remember thinking that the U.S. was going to isolate itself from the world economically. The U.S. has been focusing on "removing a dependence on foreign oil" and finally starting to force importers to accept our exports (mainly thanks to a weaker dollar I'm told). International economic inter-dependency is part of what keeps countries from going to war, as long as there is balance.

    But to read this article, China will be secluding itself more and more in the name of censorship. Thankfully, the only

    • by bluemonq (812827)

      Solution... an "accidental" release of large amounts of ammonia or chlorine from a factory?

  • by Anonymous Coward
    China, please block your citizens from using Western MMORPGs. We'd like to go 5 minutes without some RUD U RIKE TO BUY PRATINUM? spam being sent to us.
  • Flash-based VoIP... this is the service that was used to get around the VoIP restrictions on the airplane Wi-Fi on American Airlines. If China ends up blocking all Flash traffic, there's going to be maaaaaaaaaany pissed off office workers...

    http://phweet.com/ [phweet.com]

  • I can confirm that both youtube and iTunes are both accessible in China (Shanghai and Beijing) as of the time of this message.

  • According to TFA, they found evidence of blocking using the China firewall test service. (http://www.websitepulse.com/help/testtools.china-test.html)

    Then it has been unblocked already.

    Seems more like a DNS error
  • by yoprst (944706)
    Gosh, every week I discover popular sites I've never heard about - thanks to "China blocks..." headlines. I need to make Chinese govt to block my site...

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