Want to read Slashdot from your mobile device? Point it at m.slashdot.org and keep reading!


Forgot your password?
Censorship China The Internet Your Rights Online

Greatfire Keeps Tabs On Chinese Censorship, Automatically 30

First time accepted submitter percyalpha writes "Greatfire is a website that automatically monitors Internet censorship in China. Recently, we improved our system to share all testing data with Herdict, a project at Harvard University on Internet blockages. User reports on Herdict of websites inaccessible in China are automatically imported into our system, and our data of websites blocked in China is also exported into the Herdict database. If you ever explore the first ten pages of the Herdict database, chances are all block reports are from China and imported from our system."
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

Greatfire Keeps Tabs On Chinese Censorship, Automatically

Comments Filter:
  • by ideonexus ( 1257332 ) on Thursday August 23, 2012 @10:16PM (#41104687) Homepage Journal

    Hmmm... Unfortunately, looking at the list of blocked URLs [greatfire.org] does provide examples of censorship of political dissent. Mostly I see facebook, twitter, most google services blocked, netflix, porn sites, piratebay, more porn sites, wikimedia, and Chinese Wikipedia. My amateur opinion would be that these blocks are due to porn being illegal there and the government eliminating access to websites that compete with their own services and social networks that the government cannot oversee.

    There's also a bunch of blogger and wordpress.com blogs. While many of these have titles making them sound related to China, I'm not understanding many of the censors, like this poetry site [wordpress.com] which is simply artsy, this blog about a teacher who loves Chinese culture and is visiting the country [wordpress.com], and this pro-China pro-Communism site [wordpress.com] and others that have no content posted to them at all like sinologica [wordpress.com].

    There are a few that do appear to possibly be blocked for challenging the government, like X in China [wordpress.com] (link is to a post listing blocked Weibo words), SmurfWillBeFree [wordpress.com] (a free Tibet blog), a blog focused on bad economic news about China [sinocism.com], and wikipedia articles on Chinese political issues [greatfire.org] (ie "Dalai Lama", "Tank Man", etc).

    This is just my quick random sampling of a few dozen sites out of 2163, so take it with a grain of salt. At some point a plurality of anecdotes becomes data, and this post doesn't come anywhere near that threshhold, but it does provide some nuance to the NPR article I cited above.

Who goeth a-borrowing goeth a-sorrowing. -- Thomas Tusser