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[liberationtech] China just blocked

Martin Johnson greatfire at
Sat Nov 10 09:22:38 PST 2012

Google unblocked again - was it a mistake or a test?

Adam - you can test Google Talk and any URL at

On Sat, Nov 10, 2012 at 2:29 PM, Adam Fisk <afisk at>wrote:

> Thanks Martin. Do you know if Google Talk is still accessible (
> -Adam
> On Friday, November 9, 2012, Martin Johnson wrote:
>> Today, Nov 9, 2012, was blocked in China. It's the
>> first time since we started tracking online censorship in China in February
>> last year that this has happened. Here's what we know:
>>    - The subdomains,,,
>>,,, perhaps many more are all currently DNS poisoned in China. Instead of
>>    the real IP addresses, any lookups from China to any of these domains
>>    result in the following IP: That IP address is located in
>>    Korea and doesn't serve any website at all.
>>    - This means that none of these websites, including Google Search,
>>    currently work in China, unless you have a VPN or other cirumvention tool.
>>    - Using a DNS server outside of China doesn't help. A lookup of
>> to is also distorted, by the Great Firewall.
>>    - So far you can still access other country versions of Google such
>>    as
>> You can see an overview of different Google sites here:
>> You can choose any of them
>> and test them in real time to stay updated.
>> Affecting more users than ever
>> Facebook, Twitter and YouTube were all blocked before they attracted more
>> than a small number of users in China. We've argued before that the
>> authorities didn't dare to fully block GMail since it has too many users
>> already. Fully blocking Google goes much further. Google Search is only the
>> second search engine in China (after Baidu) but with an online population
>> of more than 500 million that still leaves it with many millions of daily
>> users. According to Alexa, it's the Top 5 most used website in China. Never
>> before have so many people been affected by a decision to block a website.
>> If Google stays blocked, many more people in China will become aware of the
>> extent of censorship. How will they react? Will there be protests? Check
>> out reactions by Weibo users on FreeWeibo.
>> Temporary or permanent?
>> The Communist Party of China is currently holding its 18th Party Congress
>> in which new leaders of the party and the country are formally chosen. The
>> fact that Google is blocked now is surely no coincidence. The big question
>> is whether it will be unblocked again once the congress is over. We will
>> closely monitor developments.
>> By the way.. Analytics
>> The fact that is blocked doesn't just
>> mean that you can't access the web interface in China. It means that visits
>> by Chinese users won't be tracked by Google anymore. Foreign websites using
>> Google Analytics to track their visitors will currently track 0 users
>> coming from China, whether or not their website itself is blocked.
>> What to do?
>> Many VPNs and other circumvention tools have been working poorly or not
>> at all in the last few days. The free iPhone app OpenDoor is still working,
>> though it has also suffered glitches recently. Another method of accessing
>> Google Search is to use one of their other country versions such as
>> or These may also be blocked of course.
>> You can also access Google directly using one of their IP addresses.
>> These don't appear to be blocked (yet). Here are some:
>> From:
>> --
>> Best
>> Martin Johnson
>> ---
>> - Uncensored, Anonymous Sina Weibo Search.
>> - Monitoring Online Censorship In China.
>> - We Can Unblock Your Website In China.
> --
> Unsubscribe, change to digest, or change password at:

Martin Johnson
--- - Uncensored, Anonymous Sina Weibo Search. - Monitoring Online Censorship In China. - We Can Unblock Your Website In China.
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