Chinese shut down Web sites "in memorial"

Fuzheado, Andrew Lih in Beijing, just told me over on Twitter that Chinese Web sites have been ordered to shut down in memory of the quake victims. He then Tweeted a link to the official edict.

This is why I’ll fight to the death to protect our freedom of speech. Already we’re talking a lot about this over here.

My wife remembers the day her parents decided to send her out of Iran. It was when a bunch of soldiers saw her laughing on the street when she was 13 or so. They came up to her and said “why are you laughing at a time like this?” (It was during the Iran/Iraq war).

Government control of its people starts with how it treats its media.

UPDATE: read the comments here. These sites are only entertainment ones and the edict doesn’t seem to be as stern as first reported on Twitter. It’ll be interesting to watch this story evolve over time.

Comments

  1. Well, I am a Chinese, so I read Chinese announcements linked, and apparently you didn’t.

    And you are on the wrong side again, this time. Let’s say the link provided there was an accurate description of the things to be done, even you read through the things briefly in the google translated page http://tinyurl.com/6kc4n7

    you find two things:
    1. They only ordered the website to shut down all the entertainment related channels, and put up all the mourning notice there
    2. The admin is supportive of the actions the government takes.

  2. Well, I am a Chinese, so I read Chinese announcements linked, and apparently you didn’t.

    And you are on the wrong side again, this time. Let’s say the link provided there was an accurate description of the things to be done, even you read through the things briefly in the google translated page http://tinyurl.com/6kc4n7

    you find two things:
    1. They only ordered the website to shut down all the entertainment related channels, and put up all the mourning notice there
    2. The admin is supportive of the actions the government takes.

  3. Probably, China wants to continue aggressively promoting themselves as a tourist attraction.

    Miss World as well as several other International beauty pageants are being held there

  4. Probably, China wants to continue aggressively promoting themselves as a tourist attraction.

    Miss World as well as several other International beauty pageants are being held there

  5. Robert, reading your story about Maryam was a grim reminder of something my son went through in Fallujah, Iraq in 2004…

    Our guys had been giving candy to the Iraqi children. One day they were told to stop doing that immediately. A man had followed a child home and gutted him alive in front of his parents. He pulled out the candy from the child’s stomach and told the parents he deserved to die for seeking pleasure from Americans.

    Some people might think that Maryam’s parents overreacted. I don’t.

  6. Robert, reading your story about Maryam was a grim reminder of something my son went through in Fallujah, Iraq in 2004…

    Our guys had been giving candy to the Iraqi children. One day they were told to stop doing that immediately. A man had followed a child home and gutted him alive in front of his parents. He pulled out the candy from the child’s stomach and told the parents he deserved to die for seeking pleasure from Americans.

    Some people might think that Maryam’s parents overreacted. I don’t.

  7. Robert,

    Can you remember what the U.S. was like after 9-11 , the way the U.S. media pranced around the issues, the way people felt bad to party?

    I’ve lived in China since 1995, but I happened to be in New York from the end of September 2001 to February 2002.

    The feeling here is very similar right now.

    Even a small private website like Bullog.cn, which aggregates some of the most liberal and rebellious blogs on the Chinese Internet has closed itself down for three days and put up an image of a flag at half mast.

    China does indeed have a Leninist system of media control, and that has come into play, along with other measures the government has taken to mark the significance of the tragedy.

    Many Americans felt it was not appropriate to talk about the mistakes of U.S. foreign policy in the week immediately after 9-11.

    It seems churlish and wholly unsympathetic to dump on the Chinese government right now, after they have done such a good job in the last week.

  8. Robert,

    Can you remember what the U.S. was like after 9-11 , the way the U.S. media pranced around the issues, the way people felt bad to party?

    I’ve lived in China since 1995, but I happened to be in New York from the end of September 2001 to February 2002.

    The feeling here is very similar right now.

    Even a small private website like Bullog.cn, which aggregates some of the most liberal and rebellious blogs on the Chinese Internet has closed itself down for three days and put up an image of a flag at half mast.

    China does indeed have a Leninist system of media control, and that has come into play, along with other measures the government has taken to mark the significance of the tragedy.

    Many Americans felt it was not appropriate to talk about the mistakes of U.S. foreign policy in the week immediately after 9-11.

    It seems churlish and wholly unsympathetic to dump on the Chinese government right now, after they have done such a good job in the last week.

  9. Wow, I am so glad the Olympics are going to be in China. Isn’t everyone? It just makes so much sense to reward a horrific government with such an event.

  10. Wow, I am so glad the Olympics are going to be in China. Isn’t everyone? It just makes so much sense to reward a horrific government with such an event.