Monday, June 7, 2010

The logic behind censorship in China

Several sites that were blocked before were suddenly accessible on last friday. China is notorious for it's censorship for in the information on the Internet. Sites that related to pornagrphy or voilate state secret will be flitered and sometimes be blocked. To control some news that agianst the image of the country, some foreign reporters' e-mail accounts are sometimes be hacked. Maybe, the people is China has already got used to this limited information flow, or maybe that is the reason why so many pirate sites now used around the world are from China.
On the forth of June, the social network site Fourquarter was block when users tried to check-in in Tiananment to memorial the 21th anniversary of Tiananment Square masssacre. However, some porn sites which were banned for a long time was being suddenly accesible.
What does that say to Chinese Government? That it cares more about the past than now?
People in China said, there's alway an unclear reasons why some sites are banned and others are not. Guess in a automacratic society like China, people are not allowed to ask but just to follow. Even with the free feature of the Internet, China is using every means to remains its power amoungst its people.

Sunday, June 6, 2010

It's a privilege to freely access to information

It's shocking yet sad to read this line from a Chinese student in Hong Kong, "Free access to information is a need and a privilege." With the strictly censoring of information in China, this represents lots of other Chinese students either now studying abroad or studying in Hong Kong.
How free the media in China is? 'China's constitution affords its citizens freedom of speech and press, but the document contains broad language that says Chinese citizens must defend "the security, honor, and interests of the motherland."' Which means anything the government thinks would offend to what has been mentioned above will be blocked by its firewall. What happens to those aren't blocked but then considered to violate the regulation? Fine, closing news outlet, imprisonment, self-censorship would be faced. Words like protests, environmental disasters, Tibet, and Taiwan will be filtered and maybe blocked.
Information is relatively limited. No wonder there’s often a big difference between Chinese people and people from other cultures. I think with the closed information flow, it’s so hard for them to know about what is going on outside their soil. Digital divide will happen due to being rich or not. However, even with the light year speed of developing in China societies, the censorship from the Government is slowly draining the public’s brains.

further reading:
Media censorship in China.
China's censorship could lead to a brain drain.

Saturday, June 5, 2010

21th anniversay of Tiananmen

I was counting the date the other day, when I realize it was forth of June, I got a weird feeling that there was something on this date. Used to be something going on on this date, then I read this article which solve my question. It was the 21th anniversary of Tianamen incident. Back home, every 4/6, our TV will constantly broadcast what happened 20 ye21th anniversay of Tiananmen
I was counting the date the other day, when I realize it was forth of June, I got a weird feeling that there was something on this date. Used to be something going on this date, and then I read this article which solves my question. It was the 21th anniversary of Tiananmen incident. Back home, every 4/6, our TV will constantly broadcast what happened 20 years ago, and how do the people memorial it.
This social network site, Foursquare, is a location- based that allows users to share their location via mobile phones with friends. However, when users tried to check-in the location of Tiananmen on Friday, the website was blocked.
Just like that, China Government once again using it firewalls to block the things they don't want the public to know. Can history be erased? Yes, it may. After 20 years of strictly filtered the information, lots of youngsters in China actually don't have a clue what happened 20 years ago. History does being erased. This thing explains the reason why those youngsters don't really think that they are being censored, after all, how can one desires for something that he doesn't even know its existence?

Further reading:
ars ago, and how do the people momerial it.
This social network site, Foursquare, is a location- based that allows users to share their location via mobile phones with friends. However, on Friday, whe users trying to check-in the location of Tiananmen, the website was blocked.
Just like that, China Government once again using it firewall to block the things they don't want the public to know. Can history be ereased? Yes, it may. After 20 years of stricly filtered the information, lots of youngsters in China actually don't have a clue what happend 20 years ago. Hitstory does being ereased. This thing explains the reason why those youngsters don't really think that they are being censored, after all, how can one desires for something that he doesn't even know its existence?

Further reading:

Friday, June 4, 2010

When can't get one, make a clone.

Friday, June 4, 2010
When can't get one, make a clone.
iPad launched in Australia few days ago, and this new toy has drawn lots of attention around the world. What about China?
"Apple may have sold 2 million of its new iPad tablet computers in less than two months, but it now has a Chinese challenger - the identical looking iPed." Sydney Morning Herald, June 2, 2010.
From all the articles that I've read and search about China, I came across to this one about the new competitive gadget that designed in China called iPed. It looks almost the same as iPad and it’s an internet –based, android- based copycat package. That makes me wonder one thing, is it because the closeness of information in China that Chinese often come with those counterfeit products?
China has been using every means to filter the information on the internet and tend to shape the public's thoughts by blocking information and stopping international firms set business on the mainland. Maybe that's the core reason why China is the largest kingdom of counterfeit under its great firewall. Due the initial desire of wanting to know and wanting to get, Chinese people come to make their own things since they are limited in fulfilling their desires.

further reading:

Faceoff in China

Facebook was registered with a ".cn" domain name in 2006, and that was when the media world also disseminated this information in China. Additionally, afterwards Li Jiacheng invested more than 100 million U.S. dollars into Facebook and Facebook’s potential entry into China was again brought up. However, thus far, Facebook is still hovering on the outside.
China has its own social network sites such as QQ, Renren, or Kaixin001, even with the popularity of Facebook around every parts of the world; Facebook still can't find its way to enter this great online market.
China is a very local- firm- protected country, and that is another reason that Google announced to resign the soil. I think the rationale behind the government will be 1, to block anything that imply autocratic of China; 2, to block any outside companies that has potential competition to our local firms. The second one reminds me of the Ching Dynasty when Chinese empire choose to block every information outside their borders. Back then was through military force to stop foreign ambassador to come in to the land. Now with the broad less internet, the great firewall and unreasonable business regulations serve the similar function as thousands of years ago.

The Great Wall online

Thousand years ago, China built the Great Wall to protect themselves from their intruders up in the North. The Great Wall has done a fantastic job and has since then protects Chinese people from the intrusion of other countries. On March, 30, according to the reporters, they now can't get the result of searching word containing RFA which may stand for Radio Free Asia, or anything relating to "Falungong" and "Dalai Lama" were blocked. The Great Wall online in China, the great firewall has blocked everything that might intrude to the publics' minds.
I refused to think that China is still closed and autocratic, however, as the information gets more and more freely exchangeable that I come to realize the absolute monarchy system that China is having now.
Thousand years after the Great Wall is built and now visited by thousands of tourists from every part of the world, China is now having its great firewall in the virtual world to block every part of the world away.

Freedom of speech?? Where?

Few days after Google announced to leave Chinese market, few journalists who based on Western countries, saying that their yahoo email account has been hacked. And some of them reported that they've been locked out of their account.
Maybe it is a coincident that those journalists' accounts happen to be hacked right after Google saying that it's going to leave and the criticism of China being ridiculously censoring their Internet has aroused. Or is it?
I came from a country that freedom of speech seems to be a bit over implemented and it's really hard for me to imagine the closeness and censorship that China has. When I am reading this news, question popped out to me. What's the reaction when Chinese international students read this? Which side will they take? Maybe, they will be thinking that, Oh here it comes again. Or, maybe they will respond that, this is just another Western journalism revealing the dark side of our country. China uses lots of different ways to censor the content on the internet; maybe hacking into those accounts of journalists is another way to shut them up before it needs to filter the content to its public.

China, the biggest Internet market

Reading the news about how China is the biggest market on the Internet, which doesn't surprise me but just make me think: with the rigid restrictions that China has, what will the Internet market be when China to dominate culture of the Internet?
Because of the massive population in China, mobile usage is tremendous, in the five area of internet usage, which are research, communications, commerce, publishing and mobility, China is on top of each one of them.
However, in China, with the withdraw of Google, the information they can be researched is what's been approved by the government, and anything that against or that has related to topics like human right can't be found.
With the censorship in China, information becomes relatively limited. When I speak to some of my Chinese classmates, I am surprised that they believe that this censorship is doing positive effect to them. And they believe that the government filters their information to protect them.
Chinese internet market is growing, in a light year pace. Will it be possible if company choose to self-censor to meet the demand of the massive market in China? If they do, then where does the culture of the Internet of being free go??

Further reading:

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Maybe it's time for human to evolve

During my research for essay, I read a lot of papers about how the Internet is a place for idea generation and how we should let those creation be open. If we argue that those creations are under copyright law and should be protected for idea theft, those papers that I read were saying the opposite way. Every idea was built on others. Standing on the shoulders of giants, we can see further view. In the coloborating era like what we are living in now, we are all potentially a giant to others and vice versa.
As the Internet evolved, people are earging to go online, entertainment and information companies, here I refered to music, moives and the publishing. They are crying out loud saying that ther are victim from profit losses becuase of the online piracy. Again, how did their profit come from? From selling those products, from royalty. Of course they feel threat from profit loss due to the sharing culture of the Internet. I am not saying that I don't respect those interlectual property, instead, I am trying to think of a practicall way as a win win situation for those providers and users.
Our brains have been " copyrighted" for so long that it is sometimes relatively hard for us to think outsid the box. The Internet has evolved in a light year pace and has either drag or force our old producers to accept this new medium as another channel for distribution. However, if the we humans still stay in the same profiting logic, there's no way we can gain from this strong digital tide.

Saturday, May 15, 2010

new social strutural transformation

After I found out that Obama is digitally isolated, I kept thinking about a question. In the past we structured our society with money and power, whereas in the digital era such as now, do we still structure our society with those two factors?
In the class, we've talked about how it's unfair to those people who's not online which "is the majority." If so, with almost everything is eagerly put online, what is the right for those people?
According to the statistics from Internet World Stats, the internet pentration rate in the world is currently 26.6% which is not even 1/3 of the whole population. We've always said that the internet has flatten the structure of our old society, but they way I see it, the internet is slowly build up another structure based on the accessibility for information.
We've also talked about the boarder, which I found is being challenged when the Internet became more accessible. With those information flow via internet, not only the cultrual identity of every unique country will be more vague, but the old structure that we are familiar with will probably be changed entirely.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

How scared we are to be forgotten?

It's another entry about Facebook, the major part of my foreign studying life in Sydney. This morning, I woke up, open my laptop,open my firefox and click on Facebook tab. It is a classic SOP every time I open my laptop. We kind of stop talking about how Facebook making profit, but focusing on how Facebook deprive our privacy and what happen when one tries to deactivate his account.
Last week, we talked about boarder, and how boarder is blur nowadays because of the Internet. I think Facebook is a very powerful network site that bind every single individuals together, whether in the same nation boarder or not. I love Facebook for it can update my friends latest information back home, but at the same time, I can't help to notice how Facebook has done to our social life.
Would you be friend on Facebook with a guy that just met for 2 seconds in parking lot?
What does the quality of your friend list say about you? What about the group and fan page that you join?

In the F8 conference, Facebook announced a magical app that almost tracks every foot step one makes on the Internet. As they described it, it can make us being more connected than ever!!! (Mainly to marketers, I supposed.)
In the fast improving technology world and global cloud sourcing living patterns, how lonely we are to be too scared to be forgotten?

When I tried to deactivated my Facebook account, it show several pictures of me and my friends, (some that I don't even contact with them anymore)saying, XXX will miss you.
It is funny how Facebook takes its big step to connect the reality and cyber world. Friend or no friend, I think it is time that we take second consideration of how does the word "social network" really mean. When everything seems like more convenience online, is our social life too? As its notorious issue on Facebook privacy, perhaps the reason behind is we expose our information by choice.

further reading:
Read Write Web:
youtube: south park

Monday, May 3, 2010

the borders of the internet

As I read the first article from the reader, “who controls the Internet? Illusions of a border less world" by Goldsmith, J, I resembled my overseas studying experiences with the concepts of border less he mentioned. Being studying in Sydney for couple months, I realized the facts that I no longer check on the websites I used to check back home. I obtain information from the Internet; however, the information I always look for is within the border of Australia.
True, that the internet is almost a perfect medium between border and border of many countries in the world, but the region that we stay in set a invisible border. Many problems aroused in terms of internet governance due to its feature of border less; however, I think, under normal circumstances, we tend to follow the regulations in the real area that we stay in despite the wildness of the internet.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

this is the world wide web

After seeing Facebook F8 conference, knowing the three key apps that Facebook introduced: open graphic, social plug in,graph API, all to make every facebook users, or facebook users to-be be more connected to each other. I came to a question, who will be the most benefit by those new apps? Advertisers, marketers...and every entities that try to sell and be visible.
I rememebr when I first used Facebook, I was certainly thrilled and stunning to find out how myself and all the friends whether past or present, are so connected. Then again, there came a time that I realized what Facebook has done to make everyone too well connected to lose a level of privacy of one's own.
Certainly, as a marketer, I would be extremely excited to know how easy for me now to target my audiences and to directly communicate to them and all the potential market that they will bring. However, as a user, I can't help but notice the huge amount of private information that we've slowly lost. We've always thought that we still have control of what information we are willing to reveal via internet, but not anymore, in the case of facebook.
Do people care about their personal information being revealed? Or, because of te advanced technology with phones and the internet, people somehow get so distant and yet want to be connected to everyone so badly that they just willing to share everything at every moment? Last year, there were some people saying it might be possible for Facebook to finally disappear due to people get sick of being visible all the time and thus stop updating and sharing. From the statistcs of Facebook users growth, I don't think this will happen in a nearby future.

further readings:

Sunday, April 18, 2010

to stop the unstopable in China?

Pirate bay, emule, you name it, people have heard about it. Piracy issue is always there especially in a country that has no limit of internet bandwidth in Asian area or European countries. When I first came to Australia, I struggled a lot with the limited internet bandwidth because of my internet using habits back in Taiwan. The country that I came from has a sub culture that no one speaks out but everyone kind of understand it, the downloading culture amongst young people. Why didn't our government do something about this? Yes, they did. But, let’s face it, it's fairly hard and costing to track down which IP is downloading and nail it down.
When reading all those news about how China censors the internet, something interesting struck me. It's a fact that everyone know that China is the biggest pirate country either online or offline. The software I used to view the latest movies or TV series is from China. It seems like, China does care about how it public think politically and protect them from those "evil" information that they don't need to know about. But it doesn't really care about how the world thinks of it as the biggest pirate kingdom and let every of its illegal sites being used or get out of its "Wall."
China filters almost everything to "protect" it public, but none of it stops it public to be intellectual thieves.

Saturday, April 17, 2010

cloud sourcing and the ancient wisdom.

The future technology pattern is verifing the old asian wisdom. Evern Since I was little I've taught the wisdom of "Three cobblers with their wits combined equal Zhuge Liang the mast mind."Somehow, not till recently as the concept of collaboration going popular that I pick up this saying again.
As google annouced its new google doc, which added co-editing function and the popularity of wiki-, the internet further proved this old asian saying. Team work was a trend, collabortive knowledge is now happening in every fields of works, especially in the world of internet. Open source is a key issue for developing softwares.It is, indeed, very interesting to find the perfect match between our old wisdom with modern technology trend.
Fighting by oneself is relatively hard then coopoerating with others. Not too long ago, there was a project, providing a shareholder structure that open to everyone. With only a little amount of money from each individual, this project was able to run and make profit and finally reture the profit to each "shareholders." This is the power of colaborating, and only in the world of the Internet can this power be practiced beyond national borders.

Monday, April 12, 2010

pay or not to pay

With the Internet access for almost everyone in the world, nearly everyone online users assume that the information posted online is free. The printed newspaper has encountered two phases of change, one, to convert their content into Internet format; two, to face the battle of should or should not charge their exiting free content to the users.
Many news agents nowadays, have their own websites which contain some of the news in their newspaper, other than that, news aggregator engine like Google, yahoo, provide massive news information to Internet browsers. All of those providers are now delivering the content through the Internet for free, at least from the readers' point of view, we don't need to pay any online content for now.
As newspaper readership has dropped and the overall global financial crisis strokes every industry, the News Corporation chairman, Repert Murdouch has been saying to charge online news content with his strong view that quality news content should not be free. He kept one step forward recently by saying that Google, as a news aggregator is a thief and should be banned.

As a online users, I still have doubt for paid-content in the future. The internet is too wide, people can obtain their information in any way through any providers. If the news agent wabsites started to charge for their content, I think most likely, users will find another way to obtain their info and as the consequence, news agent may lost their veiwing and then their ad support.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Phony phone

When tehnology evolved, phones with heaps of apps, allow people to go online, take pictures, filming, and even located oneself, life is not simple anymore. Instead of talking to people, we choose to SMS, leaving messages in Facebook. I will say, the smart phones have become another wall built between actual connections of people.
Went back to Taiwan for couple days early this year, lots of my friends got a new tool in their hands, an iPhone 3Gs, and all of them have a very annoying attempt to keep playing with thier phone in a social event. I was even arguing with one of them that this act is fairly annoying and not respecting others, and he's point is how convenient his phone braught to him, with lots of apps and games and news contents. I kept thinking, isn't this ironic that phone, which is supposed to connect people, has somehow distanced people ?

Phone, came from greek word, far and voice, is no long just transmitting voice from point to point, with lots of added apps, the phone now is quite phony as it is.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

coming down from the cloud

With the collective resources that google provides, also with amazon's cloud service being more and more popular. we now storing our documents up there in the cloud, somewhere. Where? No one really 100 percent sure, but with those companies promises, we know that our files ARE SAFE. OR are they?
With the convinience of internet, massive information are throwing on the internet. Recently I read about an article saying Facebook may share our info to other sites, and believe it or not, IT IS in the default privacy declaration. Just people dont really read it, that all.
Personally, I don't really mind that my photos or date of birth are exposed to other people; somehow, I can't help but wonder, what if those files that we store on the internet are somehow shared to other people? true that with cloud computing, we can get access to our documents everywhere with the connection of the internet, but call me old fashioned, I still a littlbe but hold back from this whole cloud computing thing. Still, I believe in hard drives, human intalelligence rather than computer.

further reading:

Monday, March 22, 2010

NU media

Ever since internet has dramatically grown its popularity, heaps of communication tunnels are created due to its openness feature, sites like facebook, twitter...etc. 20 years later, people begin to debate whether we should let it wide open as it mostly is now, countries such as China, always has this censorship issue with all kinds of media. From my perspective, I think the internet could be the major headache for the Chinese government.
Came to Australia from Taiwan, the land of free access to everything, I was a bit not used to the limited bendwith here. Apparently, this country does something to "protect" its citizens, or shall I say, netizens.
We all came from the era with modem till now, I sort of witness the changing of the whole media evironment. It's interesting that only lately, the Australian news has exposed this new news source fact, which is lots of journalism are now from those online social websites. Whillist, it's nothing new in Taiwan anymore.
In terms of internet gonvornance, I can't help but wonder, if this is the trend that journalists start to dig their news from those none-professional[in most cases] online social network sites, how much credits left on the news??
Should we all set a rule or a watchdog for those online exchanging information?

Saturday, March 20, 2010

the censorship in china

Chains of stories been covered the issue, that after the cyber attach last year end, Google has been thinking about giving up its market in China. Before I came here, I've known that China is quite strict about all the information flow. Also, what I use to be taught is that Chinese people have almost no right to say whatever is on their mind. Couple of years later, with some of my friends working and visiting China, I thought the situation has changed. Apparently, I was wrong.
After reading all those stories, I am still surprised that how conservative this country is, and how restricted the informtaion flow is. I can understand that the govornment would certainly make some laws or ristriction to protect its own company, but I also think that there's a fine line between protective and over-protective. After I read those news, what I see is like the late Ching Dynesty that I read from the history book. Ironicaly enough, it happens at the exact same place with the exact same race.
I knew there are some sites are banned in China, such as Facebook. And I talked to one of my Chinese classmates while I am here in Sydney. To me, it's totally unacceptable that govornment is allowed to ban any of the website, since the internet should be connect to "everything", provide all sorts of information around the world. However, when I asked her about the censorship that the govornment placed on their internet, she just said, well, we are used to it. HOW PASSIVE!!!
Being the biggest market, I guess, it gives the privilage, but what about the people??