Blogspot partially returns to China

Danwei reports that Blogspot, blocked for 3 years in Mainland China, is now accessable in Beijing:

Google’s Blogspot hosting service is now accessible to mainland users. And Google Cache is operational again as well. Filtering still seems to be taking place on a keyword level. And from comments around the net, it appears that these sites are still being blocked by certain ISPs. In Beijing, Blogspot and Google Cache are accessible through Beijing Netcom; Beijing Telecom probably not. Elsewhere is anybody’s guess. Since this news is currently circulating among bloggers, we feel that publishing it here on Danwei is unlikely to jinx it. Don’t blame us if you still can’t reach the cache.

Unfortunately, I must report that Blogspot is still not accessable in Guangzhou. I just tried accessing Sun-Bin and Those Who Dare. I’ve always heard that Internet censo0rship in China was regional, although it must have taken a national coordinated policy to block Blogspot throughout the Mainland. I’m puzzled as to why Blogspot is now at least partially unblocked in China. After all, the mysterious reasons for it’s original block, I’m guessing, have not changed over these last 3 years.

The Discussion: 15 Comments

I could connect to Blogspot sites at my apartment in Beijing, but not at work… must be the BJ Telecom/BJ Netcom thing… But, at least it’s a step in the right direction.

October 13, 2005 @ 3:10 am | Comment

Thanks Kevin. As I said, access is still denied here in Guangzhou. I’ll try again tonight.

Is anyone not in Beijing able to access Blogspot? You can try by attempting to access Jing’s site:

http://thosewhodare.blogspot.com/

October 13, 2005 @ 3:35 am | Comment

Wow! Bang, zoom, it came up in two seconds here in Shenzhen! My office service is different from the home connection, so we’ll see.

October 13, 2005 @ 3:45 am | Comment

That’s great news Sam. For the life of me, I can’t think of a single reason as to why this would happen. Not that I’m complaining but wht would the censors suddenly unblock Blogspot after 3 years?

October 13, 2005 @ 4:01 am | Comment

no such luck here…

October 13, 2005 @ 4:09 am | Comment

I got my first non-anonymoused Chinese visitor today, so I guess there must be at least some truth to this unblocking thing.

October 13, 2005 @ 5:35 am | Comment

There’s truth in it alright. If Jeremy at Danwei says he can access in Beijing then that’s good enough for me. That’s why I’m happy to publcise such a joyous event and appeal for people to identify exactly where Blogspot is accessable and where it’s not. So far a thumbs up in both Beijing and Shenzhen

BS/MeiZhongTai

Congrats on your first unmolested hit from behind the Great Firewall in 3 years.

October 13, 2005 @ 6:01 am | Comment

This is good news. I don’t suppose this is a kickback to google for the Taiwan map thing. Seems far-fetched, but you never know.

October 13, 2005 @ 6:26 am | Comment

Good news! I wonder if Blog-City will be following any time soon? ๐Ÿ˜›

October 13, 2005 @ 9:23 am | Comment

Just a reminder: Since the blogspot ban was imposed in 2002, there have been numerous times when suddenly, out of nowhere, the ban lifted. There was euphoria, and more talk of a new golden age of fre3dom. Alas, they were all false alarms. Once blogspot was available for about three days, only to be cruelly banned again. Is this an act of sadism, as in a game of cat and mouse? Is it just someone asleep at the censorship switch? Whatever it is, the fact that it’s only available in parts of the ocuntry tells me it’s not a matter of national policy and more a matter of a temporary screw-up on the part of the cyber-nanny.

October 13, 2005 @ 9:37 am | Comment

Hmm. I’m in Beijing, and Jing’s site doesn’t seem to load ๐Ÿ˜›

So, still no difference here…

October 13, 2005 @ 11:24 am | Comment

Don’t celebrate just yet, the block hasn’t been lifted, it’s just become smarter.

While some pages are accessible, try accessing a page or two with a lot of banned content on it and see what happens.

This is all part of China’s subterfuge, they are refining their technolgy to make it appear that the web is free by being more selective with what is blocked, right down to the individual pages in this case.

This is dangerous, it is creating the impression that people are free to post, but are only posting acceptable content, because the unecceptable content is being strategically blocked.

October 13, 2005 @ 12:17 pm | Comment

You could be right ACB. What you say certainly sounds about right. Yes, I’d be amazed if Blogspot was un-blocked. As Richard said above, it sounds like the nanny is undergoing a few changes and Blogspot is somehow slipping through in a few places.

I still can’t access.

I read another article this morning saying that Blogger is also accessable.

October 13, 2005 @ 9:53 pm | Comment

I still can’t get blogspot URLs in Beijing.. It would be almost too good to be true, like getting newsgroups on Google..
Phil

October 14, 2005 @ 6:12 am | Comment

At first I was buying into the temporary slipup theory but I am still getting an ‘unmolested’ hit every day or two from China. I’m also getting hits via anonymouse so either some people are still blocked or some people don’t realize they don’t need to anonymouse me.

October 18, 2005 @ 1:03 am | Comment

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