Internet Censorship in China Essay

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Ruoxuan (Catherine) Yuan
Internet Censorship has negative effects on China
Censorship in China has gained much attention recently because of the conflict between Google and the Chinese government’s self-censorship policies. In fact, censorship has been practiced since ancient China and the intensity only increases by the years. Nowadays, the most notable measure of censorship is being done on the Internet. More and more restrictions have been put into actions by the Chinese government, which make the life of Chinese Internet users, the Chinese netizens, very inconvenient. With the intensity of censorship increasing and the censoring technology improving, Internet censorship has mainly negative effects on Chinese society.
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A famous example took place in May 2006, when Chinese netizens encountered difficulty connecting to Hotmail, which is an important method to communicate with foreign partners, since it is used all around the world. Also, soon after this event, Chinese netizens again reported that the access to POP mailboxes in many mail providers was difficult. Although Chinese netizens have tried to use blogs and forums to maintain communication, many blogs have been blocked ever since then, including Xanga and the LiveJournal. This makes international cooperation difficult. From this, the efficiency of producing commodities and the quality of the products in China cannot catch up with international standards, thus the Chinese economy suffers.
Internet censorship and the requirement of self-censorship not only harm the economy inside China, but also are negatively affecting China in aspects of international commercial trade, even as globalization becomes the trend of today’s world. Chinese Internet censorship is applied to both directions; not only blocks Chinese Internet users’ access to certain foreign websites, but also prevents foreigners from knowing the truth about China through refusal of releasing reliable information. So when foreign companies want to enter the Chinese market, they face a serious question: “How do you assess an investment opportunity if no reliable information about social tensions, corruption or
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