Crack in great firewall of China

Some Chinese Internet users have this week been able to access blocked websites such as YouTube, Facebook and Twitter, relishing the newfound freedom although the reason for the breach in China’s Great Firewall of censorship was a mystery

February 29, 2012
firewall

Some Chinese Internet users have this week been able to access blocked websites such as YouTube, Facebook and Twitter, relishing the newfound freedom although the reason for the breach in China’s Great Firewall of censorship was a mystery.

China blocks most foreign social networking sites (SNS) out of fear that unfettered access would lead to instability. Chinese SNS firms have filled the void by offering similar products that censor topics the government may find sensitive.

“I can suddenly access YouTube! No need to breach the firewall!” Weibo user Arvin Xie posted on Tuesday.

Weibo is a microblogging platform, similar to Twitter, that allows users to post short messages and follow other users.

Internet users including students on university campuses reported that they were able to access YouTube, Facebook and Twitter on their mobile phones and desktops in the afternoon and evening on Monday and Tuesday.

“I used Facebook for the first time yesterday,” Zhang Wenjin, 23, a student at Shanghai’s prestigious Jiao Tong University told Reuters on Tuesday.

“I went on and took a look. I’m sure there were suddenly a lot of people who signed up on Facebook yesterday,” Zhang said, adding that she had also signed up for an account.

It is unclear what caused the crack in China’s Great Firewall, as the blocking of websites and censoring of search results for politically sensitive terms is known, or how widespread it was.

On Wednesday, access to Facebook, YouTube and Twitter was again blocked.

Some users in China pay for a virtual private network (VPN) to bypass the blocking of websites and censoring of searches.

Over the weekend, Chinese users also gained access to Google Inc’s social networking site, Google+ and flooded U.S. President Barack Obama’s page on the site with calls for greater freedom in the world’s most populous country.

Google+ is currently blocked through regular desktop access but its mobile application, which let users in China access the site, has become accessible recently.

China, with more than 500 million Internet users, is the world’s largest and most vibrant Internet community.

Tags: Active, Barack Obama, facebook, Twitter, Weibo, Youtube

Free Email Newsletter:
Subscribe

Shutterstock is the image partner of MyBroadband – technology images can be found here

Join the conversation

Connect with MyBB

twitterfacebookandroidappleblackberrynewsletterfeed

Poll

Which tech brand do you like the most?

View Results

Loading ... Loading ...

More News

Google offering $1 million for solar, wind energy breakthrough

Solar project

Google is offering a million-dollar prize for a breakthrough that would make solar or wind generated electricity more enticing for everyday uses

Twitter hires too many white, Asian men

Twitter-logo-new

Twitter has acknowledged that it has been hiring too many white and Asian men to fill high-paying technology jobs

ISPs must deliver on their speed promises

Speedtest

U.S. communications regulators have reminded Internet service providers to promise consumers only the speed and quality of service that they actually deliver

ADSL vs Mobile broadband prices in SA

DSL cut cord

There are cases where mobile broadband can be cheaper and faster than DSL in South Africa. At what point is DSL worth it?

bool(true)