Fear and Loathing in China Suppression of Social Media

Posted: July 5, 2011 in Social Media

China's Facebook clone renren.com login screen

New Link added 7/24/2011 http://www.ministryoftofu.com/2011/07/china-bullet-train-crash-kills-35-citizens-flock-to-donate-blood-state-callous-busy-with-cover-up/

 

China to censor outspoken crash coverage:  http://www.google.com/hostednews/afp/article/ALeqM5gnr8AaiMqeCBswBHqN3ufulb8XKQ?docId=CNG.c9797b1e831fca334c8df35849dbefe5.641

 

Ministry of Tofu http://www.ministryoftofu.com/category/chinalulz/

The anniversary celebrating 90 Years of the Communist Party was July 1st. Forbes Magazine called it “From the March from Communism to the March of Capitalism”. A march indeed; the rise from cheap knockoff to cheap super power has begun in earnest. From the J20 Stealth Fighter wannabe gleaned clearly from the hack of the prime contractor’s database containing our F-35 data to the reported building of an aircraft carrier. China has started to become a real presence in space and cyberspace these days. So why wouldn’t they have Social media too? Well I am glad to report they sure do; and of course it’s a clone of my nemesis Facebook.

Renren is defined as:  The Renren Network (; literally “everyone network”), formerly known as Xiaonei Network (; literally “on-campus network”) is a Chinese social networking site with an interface similar to that of Facebook. It is popular among college students in China. I have a feeling being popular means that because it’s all that is allowed by the Peoples Government? It’s no secret that China is a hard-line. Their history of suppressing free speech is well documented; from artists to techies. Obama threw in his 2 cents about not allowing access to sites like Twitter in a speech to students back in 2009 “I think that the more freely information flows the stronger the society becomes, because then citizens of countries around the world can hold their own governments accountable, they can begin to think for themselves and that generates new ideas and encourages creativity.” From what I have read 66% or more believe that opinions expressed in social media have more influence over contemporary public policy than other source.

Shaping policy; there it is again. The Dragon might well fear that and they should; China’s Communist Party said in its meetings that the challenge for them is corruption; given that the new capitalists have lost on the order of 140 billion dollars to fleeing Party members with dirty little fingers. I would have a guess that there was a great deal of discussion about squashing social media as well. And considering that in 2009 the Chinese government ordered all Chinese computers to have the Green Dam software installed. All new computers would have this intrusive bit of software loaded at the factory. The government said the software was needed to protect young people from the dangers of pornography and other polluting influences.

What was clear to the rest of the world was that the main polluting influences Beijing was worried about were the free press from the rest of the world and other sources of information independent from the ruling Communist Party. The software also allowed the government to more easily reach into an individual computer and roam around to see what “polluting” thoughts might be stored on an individual’s hard drive.

TechRice said it like this in their list of Top 15 Social Networking Sites : “Finding reliable numbers on the Chinese internet is notoriously difficult: there are lies, damned lies, and Chinese statistics. Take them with a pound of salt” from a story dated in March 2011. It is very clear that a lot goes into China but little comes out. How long can the Chinese use stolen software to block World news and events? When will Chinese Hacktivists take the fight to their own kind? I know these crafty buggers are hammering something.

Anyone who has been to China would seriously tell you that the pollution in China is not from the Porn Industry.

Case in point dated 7/24/2011 after the tragic high speed rail accident China has taken damage control measures

http://www.ministryoftofu.com/2011/07/china-bullet-train-crash-kills-35-citizens-flock-to-donate-blood-state-callous-busy-with-cover-up/

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