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[liberationtech] Google Bows Down To Chinese Government On Censorship

Julian Oliver julian at
Thu Jan 10 04:19:29 PST 2013

..on Thu, Jan 10, 2013 at 02:01:10PM +0200, Maxim Kammerer wrote:
> On Thu, Jan 10, 2013 at 1:03 PM, Martin Johnson <greatfire at> wrote:
> > Yes, the question is what you call "working well". The censorship-warning
> > feature added last year was clearly improving the user experience. Removing
> > it worsened the user experience again.
> Is this backed up by actual user experiences from China?
> “When spoke to a few Chinese residents about the disabled
> Google feature, they were not even aware of it because they used VPNs,
> demonstrating Google might not be taking into account just how savvy
> its users are at all.” [1]

I found the article 'Five Myths about the Chinese Internet' a very useful read,
especially as regards savvy-factor of users. We in the West love to generalise
'the situation' in China but often have little or no idea as to the scale, scope
or dynamics at play. Another reason I find it particularly valuable to be
reading people on this list that are operating there.

The article was walled off at (ironically) but is available
here in its entirety:

    Five Myths about the Chinese Internet:

    "Chinese Internet users are cosmopolitan, educated, and informed. Many use,
    or at least know they can use, circumvention technology like VPNs (Virtual
    Private Networks) to access blocked content."


Julian Oliver

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