Canadian Professor Comes "Face to Face with the Great Firewall of China"

May 5, 2005

The online edition of The Ottawa Citizen has published a May 5 opinion piece by Michael Geist, Canada Research Chair in Internet and E-commerce Law at the University of Ottawa, in which he describes his experience with Chinese government Internet censorship. According to Professor Geist:

Having experienced limits in accessing both news and email, it came as little surprise to find that the search engines were subject to similar restrictions. Searches for articles on circumventing the Chinese filters yielded a long list of results, none of which could be opened. Moreover, inputting politically sensitive words such as the "Falun Gong'' cut me off from the search engines completely.

A recent study by the OpenNet Initiative found that China's government blocks access to foreign Web sites based on their political and religious content. Chinese law requires all domestic Web sites, even personal, non-commercial Web sites, to be registered with government authorities.