Chinese Communists Order Web Blocking Software on All Computers

Wednesday, June 10, 2009
Teaching Chinese children to enjoy being spied on

If computer manufacturers want to continue doing business in one of the fastest growing PC markets in the world, they will have to oblige demands from China’s government to install censorship software that could also allow officials to spy on users. Beginning July 1, all new personal computers sold in China will have to contain “Green Dam,” a program that prevents users from accessing pornography on the Internet. Although Chinese officials insist Green Dam is designed merely to help citizens lead healthier lives, computer experts warned the software could be directed to block all kinds of Internet content or allow the government to monitor Web-surfing and collect personal information.

 
Charles Mok, chairman of the Hong Kong chapter of the Internet Society, an international advisory group on Internet standards, told the New York Times, “It’s like downloading spyware onto your computer, but the government is the spy.”
 
To justify their concerns over the real purpose behind the Green Dam directive, industry experts and civil libertarians pointed to the fact that the software’s developers have ties to China’s military and public security agencies. They also noted that the decision has the blessing of Li Changchun, Beijing’s chief propaganda official.
 
Officials at Dell Computers, the third largest PC vendor in China, said they would consider including the software in new PCs only if it really is used to block pornographic content from children, and only if it can be disabled by users. Dell’s rivals, Lenovo and Hewlett-Packard, refused to comment on whether they would abide by the Green Dam directive. Some observers don’t see how PC makers can’t agree to the new rule, given what a lucrative market China has become for computer sales. More than 40 million PCs were sold last year in the country.
-Noel Brinkerhoff
 
China Requires Censorship Software on New PCs (by Andrew Jacobs, New York Times)
China Demands New PCs Have Web Site-blocking Program (by Owen Fletcher, IDG News Service)

Comments

wones 9 years ago
They should reconsider the their plan! PeopleSearches.cn

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