ZHU 1First Name + Last Name Professor’s Name Class Name Date Censorship and Freedom of Speech on China’s Internet Have you experienced or heard that one of the most annoying thing travelling in China is not being able to access Facebook? Have you wondered why? Blocking Facebook is just one way Chinese media dictates public opinions. There are other sites that have been blocked: YouTube, Google, Twitter and so on. In fact there are about 2600 blocked foreign websites in china under their internet censorship policy (greatfire.org). Most people in china don’t even know the existence of most of these websites. Moreover, Chinese internet strictly filters Contents about political, social, conflicts and securities. The People’s Republic of china (PRC) is a oneparty state ruled by the Chinese Communist Party (CCP). While China is growing at a drastic speed, CCP is constantly receiving critical comments and also facing protests from teenagers. In respond, its information communication technology (ICT) sectoris maintaining the regulations (Deibert). It might seem necessary to regulate informations about political threat, social issues, and conflicts in order to keep people in faith of its Communist Party, butthe “less they know, the more they wonder”, it is also human right to have freedom of speech. It is about the time of changes,since more and more teenagers are questioning China’s censorship, since its purpose is obvious: to keep civilians in faith of CCP by being dishonest. China needs the change. Chinese government has been hiding the truth to its people. Here are some instances of what informations are completely erased, or being stated untruthfully. On March 10, 2008, a group of pro- Tibetan, traditional religious whose temporal head is Dalai Lama, protested in the
ZHU 2Tibetan capital of Lhasa, calling for improved human rights, religious freedom, and political independence (Deibert). Pro- Tibetans groups such as the International Tibet Network claimed have been suffering from China’s rule, through torture, execution, suicides, and starvation. They government called for violence against them to protest, resulting around 200 death, according to Tibenan. However, Beijing denied this number, saying 22 people, mostly Chinese civillians, died during riots (Armstrong). Regardless the number of people died, using violence against protests is against human right of speech. However, in China’s response on its news, the media reported that Dalai Lama was evilly seeking Tibetan independence, although Dalai denied and claimed that his actual purpose of the protest was the call of human rights (Armstrong). Following this event, China faced increasing international pressure. In response, China promised to reduce its censorships to the media, especially internet, but during the following years, China not only remained the censorships but made it tighter. Another good instance is the Tiananmen Protest event in 1989. Thousands of college students protested for human rights, freedom of speech, against governing corruption, low employing rate, and the inflation, which were all by good means (Nathan). But similarly, the government then used tanks against the protests, resulting hundreds to thousands of students’ death. However, there is no online content on Chinese internet that tells the truth. Instead, it is explained that the Tiananmen Protest was initiated by confused teenagers and we should learn to be more thoughtful. As we can see, China’s media dictates public opinion, by being dishonest. There are moreinstances such as the unrevealed news of a subway transportation accident, the China’s bloggers got into “fatal accident” who posted true but negative political content about CCP; I remember a teenager who has been posting videos about history on Youku.com (A website functioning as Youtube.com), he opposes the Chinese government with his modest social value
ZHU 3with human rights, but shortly after, he upload the last video apologizing that he was ignorant and the previews videos were untrue and would be deleted. Most order generations in China don’t know the existence of Chinese government’s Censorship. When I was studying in China, at meddle high level, I had a teacher, Mr. XX, who believed in no other religious but CCP, which is not even a religious. He was a story teller. He told stories from personal life to world events. And whenever he talked about CCP, he presented loyalty attitude, without knowing the level of dishonest the CCP is. There are three divisions when comes to the opinions to the censorship of China: those who support, those who don’t know, and those who against. The reason given from the supporters is simple: China is a huge community that required special regulations. However, in my opinion, such censorships are the ways of dictatorships, are the ways without human rights. I believe our community needs everybody’s effort to improve, not just the old government, CCP. There are three reasons. First, as our informations era goes, Chinese will eventually realize the dishonesty of their government; there is an old saying of China, “The paper can’t wrap the fire,” and CCP needs to reduce its censorship and open up the freedom of speech. Second, we need public agendas. Third, having only one party is not efficient in response to public agendas. As for now, it is a matter of time for all the changes to come. @#$%, an associate professor in the journalism department at China’s @#$%^ University in Shanghai, published a book to the open world in English: (book title) @#$%^. In the book, [email protected]#$ notes that the internet debates is almost uncontrollable, which are still going on. And he believes more and more people will get out of the CCP media circle, where the media tells stories the way CCP wants people to believe in. The needs for political reform are being separating on Chinese internet. Perhaps the CCP has now realized the coming force of the change, it has relaxed its
ZHU 4broader in recent years. But it will not give up its control without resistance, and these resistances is up to the rest of people to add!
ZHU 5Works Cited GreatFire.org. “Online Censorship In China.” January 9, 2012. Deibert, Ronald. “Access contested : security, identity, and resistance in Asian cyberspace information revolution and global politics.” International Development Research Centre, Canada. 271-298 Armstrong, Paul. “What’s behind China’s Tebetan unrest?” CNN January 31, 2012 Nathan, Andrew, J. “The Tiananmen Papers.” Foreignaffairs.com. Council on Foreign Relations, Inc. Essays. January/February 2011 @#$%^&*