Don’t miss the very interesting follow up post to the story I linked to directly below. Seems the Party was just one step behind the Far West blogger, ready to plug any annoying leaks.
I had it coming, I guess. Less than 48 hours after I published an article about the internet situation in Xinjiang (including a short sentence about the ability to circumvent the block), every single internet and phone loophole across the province suddenly stopped working. Obviously it is most likely a coincidence, but I’m beginning to feel guilty when I get concerned calls from other foreigners asking me if my ability to access the internet has been disabled as well.
As I sit here in a hotel room in Shanghai, soaking up what may be the last ounce of internet I see until February, I find myself struggling with what is happening back in Xinjiang. A lively discussion on the ethics of this internet block took place over at the Peking Duck and although I find it interesting I’m glad I didn’t get the chance to enter the debate. [From Richard: I'm glad as well, for your sake. Life's too short.]
The fact is that I moved to Xinjiang knowing full-well that I was subjugating myself to China’s laws and leadership. I don’t feel that I have the right to complain (although I do reserve the right to remain frustrated!) and I definitely don’t feel like packing up and calling it quits. I refuse to let the internet dictate my life no matter how important
Best of all is the quote he includes at the very end. This wall is about as effective at “protecting” the Chinese people as that other, more famous wall. Great post, once again.
Any commenter who comes on here and argues the GFW is proof of the CCP’s genious because they’re just using it, successfully, to protect China’s citizens from computer viruses and malware does so at their own risk. Please, can’t you come up with something better than that?
Richard Burger is the author of Behind the Red Door: Sex in China, an exploration of China's sexual revolution and its clash with traditional Chinese values.