Beta

Slashdot: News for Nerds

×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

China Blocks More Internet Services

timothy posted more than 5 years ago | from the how-totally-amazing dept.

Communications 69

Dave writes "China continues to block more and more popular services. This week they blocked iTunes and YouTube, and now it's TringMe, a popular VoIP 2.0 service. From TringMe's Blog: 'We received close to hundred complaints from our China users that TringMe services is not accessible from yesterday. We have found after our investigation that TringMe is blocked by Chinese government. Earlier China blocked Skype and now they are turning their eye to TringMe. TringMe is extremely popular in China and we have a large number of paying customers in China including a Chinese social network with 3 million users using TringMe's API & services.'"

cancel ×

69 comments

This is news? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24769725)

Please. This shouldn't surprise anyone.

Re:This is news? (1)

RiotingPacifist (1228016) | more than 5 years ago | (#24770075)

tbh we all saw this coming when they loosened the restrictions for the Olympics.

Re:This is news? (1)

sporkme (983186) | more than 5 years ago | (#24775501)

There is no one here to be surprised. Please move along.

404 File Not Found (2, Funny)

Taimat (944976) | more than 5 years ago | (#24769741)

Yikes! They got slashdot!

Block China? (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24769775)

Perhaps the western world should block China from the internet.

Re:Block China? (2, Insightful)

Raistlin77 (754120) | more than 5 years ago | (#24769803)

Something tells me the Chinese government would love nothing more than for that to happen.

Re:Block China? (4, Insightful)

sakdoctor (1087155) | more than 5 years ago | (#24770187)

Precisely why we shouldn't.
Cultural imperialism is our most effective weapon, and for it to work we need all channels as open as possible.

Let a country completely wall itself off and you end up with North Korea, where the general population's world view in no way resembles the actual physical reality.

World View (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24771543)

Let a country completely wall itself off and you end up with North Korea, where the general population's world view in no way resembles the actual physical reality.

And this is different from religious America how?

Re:World View (2, Insightful)

Bryansix (761547) | more than 5 years ago | (#24771643)

In every way possible. People in the United States are constantly having their world view challenged. Look at how Gay Rights is such an important issue now. If things were as you imply then there would not be anything near Gay Rights because there would be no discussion on the matter.

Re:World View (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24771951)

Good point. Of course, I wasn't implying America is as bad as North Korea.

My point was that "world views that in no way resemble the actual physical reality" are not only found in countries like North Korea. In America, and increasingly in Europe too, we see things like anti-terrorism measures that violate people's privacy without actually providing any security. And that's just one stupid example off the top of my head. Just because things aren't as bad as in North Korea doesn't mean there's nothing wrong.

Which reminds me of this quote by Benjamin Franklin:

Those who would give up Essential Liberty to purchase a little Temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety.

Re:World View (1)

Pantero Blanco (792776) | more than 5 years ago | (#24780389)

And this is different from religious America how?

Opposing views exist in the United States, and censorship is limited to indirect, ineffective measures. I can walk around and ask people their opinions about Bush, and I'll get several different answers, many of which won't be very flattering (to put it lightly). I don't think very many people would tell me that the birds would mourn when his father died. Back when he was popular, one or two people might have said that he was "given directions by God", but it wouldn't have been the view of the general population.

Just because two nations are both imperfect doesn't mean that they're equally flawed.

Re:Block China? (4, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24770471)

Perhaps the western world should block China from the internet.

Here's a better plan: on all pages with scientific and technical information-- which is to say, the stuff that the Chinese leaders want their people to be able to access-- embed somewhere in the page some of the keywords that trigger the firewall filters-- stuff like "free Tibet" and "Say Yes to Falun Gong" and the names of the Tiananmen Square [wikipedia.org] June 4th protesters (in Chinese).

Make their own firewall block the internet.

Re:Block China? (1)

neuromanc3r (1119631) | more than 5 years ago | (#24778839)

Great idea. After all, we all know that denying people access to knowledge and keeping them stupid is the best way to help them free themselves from oppression.

Awwww. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24769791)

Awww... another story of blockage from this country... Do we have to hear it?

Yes, we do. (2, Insightful)

Kuroji (990107) | more than 5 years ago | (#24769841)

China blocking more and more software that would allow communication between the billion-and-change people inside the country, or between people in China and people outside China, may be business as usual but it's going to deal this company a blow by terminating three million accounts.

Should we not consider anything that is 'business as usual' to be news? If that's the case, why not just drop any news coverage of the telco immunity deals, domestic spying, or abuse of prisoners at Guantanamo and similar facilities? Those are things that seem to be happening with disturbing regularity lately.

Re:Awwww. (1)

sych (526355) | more than 5 years ago | (#24792023)

Well, you *could* set up a proxy server that filters out Slashdot stories that you don't like, and run your web access through that!

Not really blocked (1, Informative)

PlatyPaul (690601) | more than 5 years ago | (#24769807)

From TFA (the 2nd of 2 paragraphs, where the 1st was in TFS):

However, good part is that TringMe is not completely blocked and you can still access TringMe in China by adding tringme.com to your hosts file. If you are Windows user, hosts file is located in C:\WINDOWS\system32\drivers\etc directory. For Linux users, it is located in /etc directory. We also have other workarounds for our users to access TringMe serivces and we will publish those too if requires. We will try best to let our chinese users âHappy Tringing!!!â(TM)

If you can still use it this way, it's not really blocked.

Re:Not really blocked (3, Insightful)

RiotingPacifist (1228016) | more than 5 years ago | (#24770033)

We already know chinas blocks are easy to get around, its about control more than anything. if something is 'blocked' people don't talk about it.

Re:Not really blocked (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24775555)

?talk about what?

Wait, what? (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24771199)

> If you can still use it this way, it's not really blocked.

Isn't that like saying that if you can pick the lock, the door wasn't really locked?

I mean, where exactly do you expect them to find out which IP they're supposed to put into their hosts file?

So how much longer... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24769821)

...are the Chinese people going to put up with this crap before they finally decide it's time for a new government?

And forget protesting, if there was a mass strike and business shutdown all over China, it would send a very powerful message that this censorship will no longer be tolerated. If you want to bring a government to it's knees, then shut off its flow of money for a few days.

The news the next morning... (2, Insightful)

Kuroji (990107) | more than 5 years ago | (#24769883)

Good citizens stay indoors while the proud national military is out arresting the fools who would wish to harm our proud nation!

This is China. Do you think they don't have contingency plans for things like that? More importantly... how are they going to coordinate to do this without attracting enough notice to shut it down before it begins?

Re:So how much longer... (1)

jameskojiro (705701) | more than 5 years ago | (#24769929)

They would just send in their troopers and the people would be forced back to work at gunpoint.

Re:So how much longer... (1)

strelitsa (724743) | more than 5 years ago | (#24769969)

Just hope that the Chicoms haven't already bought your bullet.

Re:So how much longer... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24769987)

If you want to bring a government to it's knees, then shut off its flow of money for a few days.

Yeah, good luck keeping people away from Wal-Mart for "a few days".

Re:So how much longer... (2, Insightful)

Atrox666 (957601) | more than 5 years ago | (#24770231)

China has a long record of purging intellectuals and counter revolutionaries.
They've reduced that tendency though eugenics.
The idea that the Chinese are going to stand up in droves just because horrific injustices are heaped upon them is laughable.
The US is starting to train it's people to the same sheepish standards.
Grass roots resistance is dead but the media war can be won.
Read some McLuhan if you want some effective weapons against this.
http://cultofjim.com/scripture/understanding_media/ [cultofjim.com]

Re:So how much longer... (3, Insightful)

eln (21727) | more than 5 years ago | (#24770349)

The Chinese government now is arguably less oppressive than it was under Mao, and the Chinese people are experiencing greater economic growth than they have for decades. Why on Earth would they want to start a revolution now? Compared to the way it was, China is a utopia these days.

Re:So how much longer... (1)

Chyeld (713439) | more than 5 years ago | (#24771531)

The Chinese government now is arguably less oppressive than it was under Mao, and the Chinese people are experiencing greater economic growth than they have for decades. Why on Earth would they want to start a revolution now? Compared to the way it was, China is a utopia these days.

Not saying they would, but the easy answer is the exact same statement. The people there have learned that there is something better, and they can learn to desire it. Why would they willingly allow themselves to be forced back under a more oppressive regime if they could help it?

Re:So how much longer... (1)

DanielLC (1346013) | more than 5 years ago | (#24773803)

The Chinese government now is arguably less oppressive than it was under Mao, and the Chinese people are experiencing greater economic growth than they have for decades. Why on Earth would they want to start a revolution now? Compared to the way it was, China is a utopia these days.

Not saying they would, but the easy answer is the exact same statement. The people there have learned that there is something better, and they can learn to desire it. Why would they willingly allow themselves to be forced back under a more oppressive regime if they could help it?

Helping it tends to involve a significant chance of dying. If they die in the current government, they miss out on a lot more than if they died under the older government. People won't revolt unless the current government is unlivable. The Chinese may not have many rights, but they can pretty consistently get food on the table, and in the end, that's all that really matters.
Besides that, anyone that's familiar with history would know that revolts just produce different governments. They might be better, but they might be worse. If it's anything like China's older governments, it'll be worse.
Of course, knowledge will make a small difference. If it wouldn't, China wouldn't bother with the Great Firewall. I think that's just to stop the occasional riots, rather than to prevent full-scale revolt.

Re:So how much longer... (2, Insightful)

wenge (1352553) | more than 5 years ago | (#24772685)

Where is the utopia you describe? Young people too tired and controlled to think for themselves. Crowded, dirty, and polluted cities where people go hither and yon with very little idea of what they are living for. The chinese have grown up with nothing and now that they have something they are unable to learn courtesy or the slightest of polite gestures. There is an army base in every city and town. Is this necessary? I think not. The Chinese are over taxed and taught what to say and think. They have no idea of what a true opinion is. Ask a young person what their hobbies are and you will get one answer, playing video games because they have so little time for relaxation or introspective that to sit for a few private moments in front of a computer screen is like their utopia. Utopia my hindquarters. I don't know which China you live in but it isn't the one I live in.

Re:So how much longer... (1)

sych (526355) | more than 5 years ago | (#24792031)

It's been tried before. The Tiananmen thing wasn't just limited to a pedestrian square in Beijing.

Aaah, Good Ol' China (1)

drunken_boxer777 (985820) | more than 5 years ago | (#24769825)

Back to normal now that the Olympics are over. Honestly, did anyone expect otherwise?

Re:Aaah, Good Ol' China (2, Interesting)

Joe the Lesser (533425) | more than 5 years ago | (#24770023)

The best time to enact unpopular laws is when national pride is at an all-time high.

That explains it! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24774591)

So americans must have been really proud of themselves over the past 7 years. Oh, no, nevermind; laws that allow torture and state surveillance are only unpopular when they're applied in other countries.

Re:Aaah, Good Ol' China (2)

moderatorrater (1095745) | more than 5 years ago | (#24770143)

It was different while the olympics were on? All I saw was a shiny, pretty, smiling face on what was the same old country the whole time. They didn't unblock internet, they still beat people up and arrested dissidents, and they put people out of work in droves.

What really pissed me off is that newspeople didn't scream about how dumb it was to give them the olympics at all.

China's not the only one (3, Interesting)

megamerican (1073936) | more than 5 years ago | (#24769827)

The UK is doing its best to censor the internet any way they can. Londonâ(TM)s St. Pancras International has been censoring [infowars.com] alternative news websites through their wi-fi for at least a month. While I see plenty of news articles about Chinese censorship, I didn't see the UK censorship anywhere else.

Re:China's not the only one (2, Interesting)

strelitsa (724743) | more than 5 years ago | (#24769949)

Well, in Britain you're free to utilize another company other than St. Pancras International if you don't like their blocking policies. OTOH, in China you're perfectly free to warmly embrace the blocking policies, as well as being free to attend any of the myriad re-educational soirees held by the Chinese government. I heard they have cookies.

Re:China's not the only one (4, Insightful)

LighterShadeOfBlack (1011407) | more than 5 years ago | (#24770021)

There's a very big difference between blocking certain sites on a single public wi-fi service and blocking all internet access to a site or service from within an entire country.

And just for the record that site you linked to is complete bullshit. It doesn't even verify that the sites were blocked intentionally, didn't ask them for comment to explain or investigate, and doesn't even provide confirmation of who is responsible for running the St. Pancras International wifi network. It's entirely possible its privately managed and the government doesn't even determine what gets blocked and what doesn't.

But who cares about facts when you've got conspiracy theories and vitriol?

Re:China's not the only one (1)

mikael (484) | more than 5 years ago | (#24774919)

Virgin media seem to have their own little firewall targeting a selection of sites. I came across the configuration page that allow users to block the following websites:

Encyclopedia Brittanica
freeloader.com
LEGO
tweenies.com
expresso education
sonicselector
musicchoice
newsplayer.com
napster
vidzone
metaboli
photobox
Premium Games from Virgin Media

I never understood why anyone would want to block Encyclopedia Brittanica or LEGO?

Re:China's not the only one (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24770135)

well censorship is a secondary concern once you see a CCTV camera on every block, have to register to come within 50 feet of a child or old person, and the govt that has lost personal data on close to half it's total population, is not even considering backing down on a central ID database with biometrics and dna samples.

iTunes (1)

Thelasko (1196535) | more than 5 years ago | (#24769847)

Does this mean music people paid for will no longer work because it can't connect to the iTunes DRM server?

Re:iTunes (2, Funny)

Free the Cowards (1280296) | more than 5 years ago | (#24770679)

iTunes doesn't contact DRM servers every time you play a file. It contacts them once, when you purchase and download a file. If you move the file to a new computer which has never seen your iTunes account before, then you have to contact the servers again to authorize that computer on your iTunes account.

So you'd be prevented from moving the files to a new computer, but you wouldn't be prevented from playing them back on the equipment that you had already authorized.

Re:iTunes (1)

Thelasko (1196535) | more than 5 years ago | (#24779525)

Thanks, you post is very informative. Why it was marked "Funny" is beyond me.

Re:iTunes (1)

Free the Cowards (1280296) | more than 5 years ago | (#24780371)

Mods on crack, I suppose. Anyhow I appreciate your reply. Such common politeness is all too rare on this site.

Let me be the first to ask... (2, Insightful)

Atario (673917) | more than 5 years ago | (#24769943)

...what the hell is VoIP 2.0?

Now with all-new Buzzword Compliance Module?

Re:Let me be the first to ask... (1)

Bryansix (761547) | more than 5 years ago | (#24771703)

This coming from a guy who is backing a candidate who's buzzword is "Change".

Re:Let me be the first to ask... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24772183)

"whose" -- just because it sounds right, doesn't mean it is...

Keep voices from getting out? (1, Insightful)

Drakin020 (980931) | more than 5 years ago | (#24770073)

Did you ever think that the reason they do this is so when shat starts hitting the fan in China, no one will be able to cry out because they will have no communication with the outside world?

I dunno...Just a thought.

Re:Keep voices from getting out? (1)

Chyeld (713439) | more than 5 years ago | (#24771279)

The fan has been coated with several layers of excrement in China for a long time now. And for the most part, no one has really noticed. They don't need to shut anything down for that, because the only people who have access to the internet are the ones who aren't dealing with the famines and abject poverty.

This is purely about control and the fact that the Chinese government shuts down anything they don't feel they can control.

2008 (2, Insightful)

darkheart22 (909279) | more than 5 years ago | (#24770079)

who controls the past controls the future who controls the present controls the past and who controls the internet controls past,future and present. o tempora o mores...

Re:2008 (1)

spun (1352) | more than 5 years ago | (#24770577)

who controls the past controls the future
who controls the present controls the past
and who controls the internet controls past,future and present.
o tempora o mores...

Who is on first rickrolls What is on second. Oh Tempura s'mores...

.CN Skype-users are gov't officials or ex-pats?!? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24771317)

If the Chinese gov't have blocked Skype, who are all the [apparently China-based] Skype users, that we continue to find on-line?

Under the circumstances, Skype.com should really find a way to either publish IP addresses (even when we are only chatting) -or- (better:) translate those addresses to country codes, so that we find out where apparently Skype chat-correspondents are likely to be located.

Come to think of it, almost every such chat-partner has been quick to invite one to visit China and/or teach English there... and there has been almost no hint of dissatisfaction with life in China, etc.

Many are reportedly teachers, some are even university lecturers, a few are employed in hospitals, etc.

Judging from Skype's presence-indicator, most seem to be on-line for many more hours than we have available for Skype chats, etc.

Who are these people?

Could they be in China, but exempt from the [reported] Chinese government's Skype-blocking?

Could they be outside of China?

Is the alleged Skype blocking effective only in certain parts of China?

Has anyone taken the trouble to find out?

If so, what have you learned about your [apparently] .CN-based Skype friends?

When one travels in China, does one have -no- Skype access? Of could it be that Skype is still available where tourists might try to use it (eg, up-market "foreigner" hotels)?

What about more affordable hostels (Motel 168) or Internet cafes? How much blocking is happening on those foreigner-accessed connections?

Do the friends you visit in China seem to have Skype-blocked Internet connections?

PS Perhaps we need an easy to run, portable blocking detector kit for use on our trips to lands where blocking is alleged or experienced, both to detect the extent (in detail) & - if possible - report the findings (automatically) to a network of data-collection web sites, eg, via encrypted eMails.

Perhaps its list of checked URLs could be automatically updated, as additional allegations of blocking arise.

If carried in a USB-drive, plugging it in could log blocked URLs & send that list out to a cost-free date/location-stamped logging service, whose information is available to all.

Re:.CN Skype-users are gov't officials or ex-pats? (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24774693)

Have you noticed how, since the Bush administration started passing bills legalizing torture, warrantless wiretapping, etc., there are constant "news" about the "lack of freedom" in China? What an amazing coincidence...

Re:.CN Skype-users are gov't officials or ex-pats? (1)

sych (526355) | more than 5 years ago | (#24792147)

I've been living in a rented apartment in Beijing, using a cable "broadband" internet service for about 6 months now. Skype has never been blocked during this period, that I have noticed. I have Chinese people from various parts of the country on my "buddy list" (or whatever it's called) in Skype, and they are regularly online.

So if Skype is blocked now, I certainly can't see any signs of it, and if it has been blocked in the past, I have not noticed it.

iTunes Store was unblocked (at least where I am) several days ago. I'm not sure if the Tibet album is still available on there or not, I haven't looked for it.

BBC News in Chinese was unblocked in the lead-up to the Olympic Games and still is. When I first came to Beijing, Wikipedia in Chinese was blocked, but it is currently accessible.

Nothing but spam (4, Insightful)

LargeWu (766266) | more than 5 years ago | (#24771419)

notice the related stories...
  Firehose:China Blocks More Internet Services by tringme (1352127)

looking at tringme's profile, he joined....TODAY! What a coincidence. Who cares if it's banned in China, he just wants to spam his service to slashdot.

Re:Nothing but spam (1)

Eighty7 (1130057) | more than 5 years ago | (#24775765)

or you could have read the summary

TringMe is extremely popular in China and we have a large number of paying customers in China including a Chinese social network with 3 million users using TringMe's API & services.'"

He wasn't exactly trying to hide it.

Re:Nothing but spam (1)

hweimer (709734) | more than 5 years ago | (#24775847)

Who cares if it's banned in China, he just wants to spam his service to slashdot.

And probably not even true. Internet censorship in China is usually done via fake RST packets [quantenblog.net] , not via DNS manipulations.

The clones? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24771639)

Lots of commenter here are as close minded as what they thought the Chinese might be. Most of you have not clue on how diverse and vibrant the net is in China. Commenter are more like using media fed ignorance and bigotry to cocoon themselves in feel good capsule. This is really a shame for the people who live in the so call free world.

Isolation (1)

Midnight Warrior (32619) | more than 5 years ago | (#24772347)

And I remember thinking that the U.S. was going to isolate itself from the world economically. The U.S. has been focusing on "removing a dependence on foreign oil" and finally starting to force importers to accept our exports (mainly thanks to a weaker dollar I'm told). International economic inter-dependency is part of what keeps countries from going to war, as long as there is balance.

But to read this article, China will be secluding itself more and more in the name of censorship. Thankfully, the only kind of war that will spark is civil. Fortunately, they have already been through a civil war [globalsecurity.org] in the last hundred years, so maybe, just maybe, they won't let it go that far. We all know that people don't like being oppressed. And if the billion or so people in China decided that they didn't like the state anymore, there are enough ants in that population to take over the grasshoppers.

Re:Isolation (1)

bluemonq (812827) | more than 5 years ago | (#24773497)

Solution... an "accidental" release of large amounts of ammonia or chlorine from a factory?

Please block MMORPGs (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24772933)

China, please block your citizens from using Western MMORPGs. We'd like to go 5 minutes without some RUD U RIKE TO BUY PRATINUM? spam being sent to us.

The Solution: Phweet? (1)

bluemonq (812827) | more than 5 years ago | (#24773483)

Flash-based VoIP... this is the service that was used to get around the VoIP restrictions on the airplane Wi-Fi on American Airlines. If China ends up blocking all Flash traffic, there's going to be maaaaaaaaaany pissed off office workers...

http://phweet.com/ [phweet.com]

Re:The Solution: Phweet? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24775279)

phweet uses tringme http://tringme.com/ [tringme.com] . So if tringme is blockes so is phweet

youtube and iTunes available in Shanghai & Bei (1)

grainofsand (548591) | more than 5 years ago | (#24774711)

I can confirm that both youtube and iTunes are both accessible in China (Shanghai and Beijing) as of the time of this message.

Corrections (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24774997)

I am in Chengdu, China right now and I can confirm that YouTube and Skype are not blocked. iTunes was blocked recently but I have read that it's now working again. I don't know about TringMe.

Unblocked already (1)

fatp (1171151) | more than 5 years ago | (#24776797)

According to TFA, they found evidence of blocking using the China firewall test service. (http://www.websitepulse.com/help/testtools.china-test.html)

Then it has been unblocked already.

Seems more like a DNS error

again (1)

yoprst (944706) | more than 5 years ago | (#24777499)

Gosh, every week I discover popular sites I've never heard about - thanks to "China blocks..." headlines. I need to make Chinese govt to block my site...

Anway... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24777663)

I found YouTube and TringMe are accessable right now, it seems these sites are not blocked at this time.

Check for New Comments
Slashdot Account

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?

Don't worry, we never post anything without your permission.

Submission Text Formatting Tips

We support a small subset of HTML, namely these tags:

  • b
  • i
  • p
  • br
  • a
  • ol
  • ul
  • li
  • dl
  • dt
  • dd
  • em
  • strong
  • tt
  • blockquote
  • div
  • quote
  • ecode

"ecode" can be used for code snippets, for example:

<ecode>    while(1) { do_something(); } </ecode>
Create a Slashdot Account

Loading...