Tightening of Government Controlled Internet Access in China Sarah Sun- Ms Wiegand History 8

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Ever since the 20th century, the communist government of China has put in place something nicknamed the Great Firewall across all internet in China. Restricting the access of information for all users within the country and allowing their usage to be monitored by the government's internet police. It's name comes from the actual Great Wall of China built to keep out invaders. These restricted "sensitive" information includes search terms such as "Free Tibet", "Human rights", "1989 Tiananmen massacre", harsh criticism of the government, and foreign creative content. As well as 3000 other global websites that Americans consider of everyday use- Facebook, Youtube, Twitter, Google, etc. The only way to get around it is to use VPN. However from this month until March 31st, 2018 VPN have been made illegal in order to strengthen the great firewall, and to "prepare for a change in the leadership of China".

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The ironic thing is: the 1989 Tiananmen massacre was a student led demonstration, demanding freedom of speech and freedom of press, yet they were killed and all press about their deaths controlled even to this day.

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By enforcing the Great Firewall and giving them no way around it, Chinese people's lives became difficult and tightly bound. The internet was created to enable easier and more convenient communications and sharing of information across large distances. By denying all of these to the Chinese people and making more harsh rules, the government has taken away the freedom of information, freedom of press and freedom of expression.

INFORMATION IS POWER

Why would the government choose to do this when it clearly makes life hard for the people of China? Well Information has Power and thus dangerous to the Chinese government. Freedom of information can drastically change and influence people's opinions and views, creating activists and rioters. However, by restricting certain information and only allowing exposure to information that will aid the government and it's goals is a form of manipulating the masses.

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China's online controls are necessary to prevent democracy advocates from stirring chaos. - Xi Jinping

By stirring up chaos he meant to expose people to other opinions that may negatively affect the government. By with holding these information, the government is actively preventing people from making their own informed choices.

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IN A MODERN, GLOBALIZED WORLD WHERE ACCESS TO THE INTERNET IS CONSIDERED BY MANY A NECESSITY, CHINA CONTINUES TO UPHOLD A RATHER BACKWARD STANCE.

Americans have total freedom on information they can access on the internet, and it has dramatically shaped many of their perspectives. Whether or not their perspectives are good is not the point, the point is they have the freedom to see all the options and choose what they will. Even the United Nations Human Rights Council has condemned state-sponsored meddling with internet access but China still has the power to act on their censorship laws.

CONNECTIONS TO THE PAST

COMMUNISM

The ban on freedom of information is a very communist ideal because communism is often represented by a single dictatorial party. The party having achieved power, heavily restricted internet access because they don't want another party or other leaders such as the China Democracy Party to usurp them. Plus their goal, currently achieved, is Cyber Sovereignty. Meaning to give the government and Xi Jinping absolute, supreme power and control over the internet within their borders. Since Xi Jinping has become president of China, he has taken active measures to restrict even more information on the internet from the people.

LEGALISM

"DON'T BUSY WITH MORALS, BUT WITH RULES"

This connects to legalism. The principles of legalism is to make strict laws for the benefit of the people even if the people don't like the laws. "People are infants. People can't rule themselves." They don't know what is best and it's up to the government to makes these censorship laws for the people.

Use authority, not love

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