Esteemed surfers of Neowin may have read one of my previous articles regarding the Internet restrictions China is currently implementing upon all new computers within its jurisdiction. The link to which can be found, here.
The original article covers some of the firewall and Internet surfing restrictions which owners of new computers will come across, thus hindering their ability to surf freely upon their computers. Developers of the software, on behalf of the Chinese government state that the software's main use will be to block access to pornography so that it may not inflict damage upon younger Internet users. However, outraged Chinese computer users state that this software is more so designed to restrict access to content deemed politically unacceptable by Chinese government authorities. Naturally, this is a topic which seems to have caused a fair outcry the world across so I thought that in this latest article I would provide an update to the situation.
News published upon The New York Times website today gives further information as to the Chinese effort to make a safer Internet. Currently, the giant search engine 'Google' is under the firing line by Chinese Internet authorities, blaming the site for linking 'too often to pornographic content'. As a result the Chinese government has disabled some search functions on the Chinese version of the search engine, namely the associative word feature which displays a drop down menu of words which are synonymous with the one typed in.
Reporters on China Central Television, the state television network provided examples of how the Chinese 'erzi' meaning 'son' resulted in some associated terms with 'lewd connotations'. Further to this, Chinese state news organizations reported that the, supposedly banned ability to access websites outside of China, was still available through Google's search engine.
The official watchdog for Internet activity in China, the: 'China Internet Illegal Information Reporting Center' have supposedly told off Google twice this year, in Janurary and April, regarding the content available through its search engine. In response to this, Google have issued a statement stating that it will make more effort to adhere to the Chinese government's requests:
"We have been continually working to deal with pornographic content, and material that is harmful to children, on the web in China"
This is clearly a topic to get some tongues wagging, and I would love to hear some opinion within the comments section below. Is it acceptable to completely restrict a country to only be able to search within the confines of an invisible blockade? What about Chinese students who may need to access material from other countries to further their education, moreover, will this inability to search outside of China hinder China's ability to continue to be a successful internationally trading country? Perhaps it will have little effect at all.