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 user 2006-06-07 at 11:54:00 am Views: 53
  • #15677

    China ‘blocks’ main Google site
    authorities have blocked most domestic users from the main
    search engine, a media watchdog said.Internet users in major Chinese
    cities faced difficulties accessing Google’s international site in the
    past week, Reporters Without Borders said.But, the
    controversial Chinese language version launched in January, has not
    been affected.The site blocks politically sensitive material to comply
    with government censorship rules.”It was only to be expected that would be gradually sidelined after the censored version was
    launched in January,” Reporters Without Borders said in a
    statement.”Google has just definitively joined the club of Western
    companies that comply with online censorship in China,” the
    organisation, the search engine’s uncensored
    international site, had previously been available to Chinese web users,
    but problems accessing the site had been reported across the country
    recently. It was blocked nationwide on 31 May, the statement said.The
    blocking was also being extended to Google News and Google Mail,
    Reporters Without Borders said.’Principled approach’A spokeswoman for
    Goggle in Beijing said that the problem was under investigation.   

    Foreign websites covering politics and sensitive issues are blocked,Chinese
    internet providers face strict censorshipWebsites, forums and blogs
    must officially register and are monitored,China’s internet ‘police’
    thought to number 50,000 censors

    On Tuesday, Google
    co-founder Sergey Brin defended his company’s decision to launch the
    censored service, a move which drew heavy criticism.”We felt
    that perhaps we could compromise our principles but provide ultimately
    more information for the Chinese and be a more effective service,” he
    said.”Perhaps now the principled approach makes more sense.”In addition
    to Google, US companies Microsoft, Yahoo and Cisco Systems have also
    been accused of accommodating China’s demands on censorship in return
    for access to its huge internet market.The Chinese government’s
    internet filtering is some of the most sophisticated in the
    world.Content considered to be a threat, including references to the
    Tiananmen Square massacre and notable dissidents, is blocked.Chinese
    authorities have also stepped up measures against software designed to
    bypass internet censorship, the Reporters Without Borders statement