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China Blocks iTunes 325

Posted by Soulskill
from the protesters-need-oxygen-let's-ban-that dept.
eldavojohn writes "If you like iTunes and you are one of the billion people residing in China, you may have noticed that you no longer have access to the eight million songs on it. An album, 'Songs for Tibet' was downloaded more than 40 times by Olympic athletes as a sign of solidarity for Tibet's cause. Ironically, this compilation had songs criticizing the 'Great Firewall of China,' and that is the very thing that prohibited these songs from reaching the Chinese public. Artists on the compilation include Alanis Morissette, Garbage, Imogen Heap, Moby, Sting, Suzanne Vega, Underworld and others." Additional coverage is available at Computerworld. Earlier this year, China blocked Youtube and other video services for similar reasons. More recently, the Chinese government detained a technologist who planned a pro-Tibet demonstration.
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China Blocks iTunes

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  • Re:Slashdot in China (Score:5, Informative)

    by aeroswift (1347955) on Saturday August 23, 2008 @06:00AM (#24717099)
    Yes, you can access slashdot from China. In fact, I'm sitting at a computer in one of Shanghai's suburban neighborhoods. You're jumping to some pretty big conclusions there. A lot of the Western media covering Chinese affairs do nothing but criticize. I'm not saying they shouldn't criticize, but it really leaves Westerners with the impression that the Chinese government is so cruel and harsh that all the citizens are living in fear. Um, no. We really aren't that affected at all, and I can say (because yes, I have lived in the US and Australia) that life here is no different, except for the annoying fact that I can't access Freewebs.
  • Re:Slashdot in China (Score:3, Informative)

    by threephaseboy (215589) on Saturday August 23, 2008 @06:30AM (#24717207) Homepage

    slashdot in spain

    http://barrapunto.com/ [barrapunto.com] I believe the title literally translates to "Slashdot"

  • by netcrusher88 (743318) <netcrusher88 AT gmail DOT com> on Saturday August 23, 2008 @07:27AM (#24717427)

    Two things to note:

    Number one, we don't ban bomb making instructions. Google "Anarchist's Cookbook". Get your facts straight before attempting to troll.

    Number two, the ban on child pornography is not because the porn itself is obscene, it is because its production is harmful. See this page: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ashcroft_v._Free_Speech_Coalition#Majority_opinion [wikipedia.org]

    Laws prohibiting the distribution and possession of child pornography ban speech because of the manner in which it is produced, regardless of its serious literary or artistic value.

    If you don't understand how this is different from China blocking all of iTMS because a handful of songs protested their takeover and violent suppression of a sovereign nation, by all means emigrate to China.

    Please no comparing Tibet to Iraq here. One might recall that we're in the final stages of talks with Iraq to fully remove American troops over time (having already handed over control of the nation to the new government), where China refuses to recognize the existence of Tibet as a separate culture and violently suppresses any suggestion that they do. Go ahead and see what happens when you walk down the street in DC with a tape of Iraq war protest songs in a ghetto blaster. Hint: odd looks, but nothing else.

  • Not blocked! (Score:5, Informative)

    by unicorn_2003_1 (926541) on Saturday August 23, 2008 @07:39AM (#24717485)
    Seriously, I'm in China and iTunes Store is all fine for me. Get a life.
  • Re:Slashdot in China (Score:5, Informative)

    by sam0737 (648914) <samNO@SPAMchowchi.com> on Saturday August 23, 2008 @09:25AM (#24718011)

    A government so concerned about loosing face in the Olympics...

    Precisely, it's not the government, but the officials are so concerned about that. Mao taught the people a lesson that they have to be "political correct" otherwise you will lose your head (most likely not only you but your family), that's 70's and has since become a culture. Today, you won't lose your head that easily (there's a lot of voices against the government in local blog and forum) but for the officials, there is nothing "wrong" to be "political correct", why risking my job in doing the otherwise?

    If you think we live under a government that the people fear, that's probably how an extreme Chinese might think about the American too (under the fear of terrorism and the watch of the Big Brother). The fact is, no we are not, and we are probably the same. Both China and US, the general public are not affected, we still work, play, shop and watching porn unaffected. We both think the government is stupid. There might be a little difference how we voice out about our hate to the government, but other than that, I think there are no difference. (Ok, I'm a Hong Kong citizen currently living and working in Shanghai, closely interactive with my colleagues who are Chinese. I also regularly travel to US for working purpose and has been an Exchange student there.)

    And, as always, the Chinese already figured out how to circumvent the particular iTunes problem, if you know how to read Chinese: http://www.macx.cn/a/a.mac?B=4000&ID=656667&Ar=656867&AUpflag=1&Ap=1&Aq=1 [www.macx.cn]

  • Re:Slashdot in China (Score:5, Informative)

    by rufus t firefly (35399) on Saturday August 23, 2008 @09:42AM (#24718127) Homepage

    That happened with the abolition of slavery, and that happened again with the civil rights movement. Elements of the government did try to fight the civil rights movement, but ultimately Martin Luther King was not sent off to a labor camp for re-education. That meant he was able to keep speaking out to persuade our society and our government to try to do the right thing.

    I'm not sure if that exactly supports your point. Many people were beaten or hanged during slavery for resisting, and it took a "war between the states" to eventually force the lower half of the country to give up their practice of slavery.

    Same thing with the civil rights movement -- many people were beaten or jailed for demanding that (gasp!) people were equal despite skin color, which most civilized people have come to accept.

  • by ssintercept (843305) <ssintercept@nOSpaM.gmail.com> on Saturday August 23, 2008 @10:16AM (#24718335) Journal
    Communism in its true form is more like the Amish. Start reading your Marx and Engels - the roots of Anarchism and Communism: http://www.marxists.org/subject/anarchism/index.htm [marxists.org]
    early Communists and Anarchists sought to preserve the communal lands and communal lifestyle, but also sought to overthrow the feudal aristocracy to establish democracy, this made them both progressive and conservative. more on the Amish see: http://people.howstuffworks.com/amish.htm [howstuffworks.com]

    Many of these groups opposed progress, and some participated in riots, the destruction of industrial machines, and the sabotage of factories. This was done because the new industrial forms of production were undermining rural life and were putting millions of craftsmen out of work by making their skills no longer valuable. Then Karl Marx came along in the mid 1800s and Marx denounced the "utopian socialism" and anti-progress communism of his day. Marx pointed out that capitalism was progressive because it represented an improvement in production. Marx hailed capitalism's triumph as a victory over feudalism. Marx said that industrialization was a good thing and that it should be embraced, that instead of opposing the progress of industrialization the goal should be to end wage-labor, and that the new industrial systems should be converted to communal property, much like the lands had been communal property just some 50 or 100 years prior. This changed the communist movement from being anti-technology to pro-technology, and led to the development of what most people recognize today as "Communist ideology". The Communist Manifesto was published in 1848 by Karl Marx and Fredrick Engels, and can be found here: http://www.marxists.org/archive/marx/works/1848/communist-manifesto/index.htm [marxists.org] It is important to distinguish the difference between Communism and Marxism. Marxism is basically a system of analysis, and a way to view the world. Communism, on the other hand, is basically a political movement, a form of government, a condition of society. It is also important to understand the difference between "communism" and the Communist Party. No country has ever had a communist system of government. The countries that we call "Communist" are countries where the dominant political party was/is the Communist Party. Communist Parties are generally political parties who have working towards achieving "communism" as part of their party platform. However, we all know the maxims on power and its corrupting allure.
  • by S.O.B. (136083) on Saturday August 23, 2008 @10:30AM (#24718437)

    Communism in it's true form is more akin to anarchism

    You might want to do a little reading before making statements like that.

    Anarchism is a "political philosophy encompassing theories and attitudes which support the elimination of all compulsory government". http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anarchism [wikipedia.org]

    Communism is a "socioeconomic structure that promotes the establishment of an egalitarian, classless, stateless society based on common ownership of the means of production and property in general". http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Communism [wikipedia.org]

    Anarchism and communism are about as "akin" as apples and kangaroos.

  • Re:Makes you think (Score:3, Informative)

    by EllisDees (268037) on Saturday August 23, 2008 @10:39AM (#24718503)

    No. It would not.

  • Anonymous Coward (Score:1, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday August 23, 2008 @12:08PM (#24719167)

    I live in China and so I decided to install itunes and see if I could visit the store.....worked just fine for me. Sometimes the connection is just wonky, for example Hotmail doesn't work once in a while, when it happens just wait a day or two and it will work.

    Now, youtube and sourceforge actually were blocked, but were unblocked within a week or two.

  • by Rich0 (548339) on Saturday August 23, 2008 @04:55PM (#24721435) Homepage

    Seriously, if anybody indeed has constructive ideas on how to substantially improve the situation in China, I'm sure a lot of people (including Chinese) would lend you their ears.

    Uh, how about hold elections? The kind where anybody can run? And how about having a free press where one isn't punished for expressing one's opinions? That would be a good start and in the long run would substantially improve the situation.

    In fact, westerners who are bashing China are usually completely out of touch with China.

    Yup - you've hit that nail on the head. Why, most westerners actually think that the citizens of Taiwan actually want to be a separate country! What a crazy idea - fortunately, the People's Daily dubunks that rubbish and points out how they've been oppressed for decades and that the best thing the world can do is get out of the way and let mainland China liberate them.

    The next thing those crazy westerners will be trying to tell us is that the Chinese governement actually masaccred students in Tienneman Square! What a load of propaganda!

  • by darien (180561) <(darien) (at) (gmail.com)> on Saturday August 23, 2008 @04:56PM (#24721445)

    Laughable and sad, really.

    Annual firearm homicides per 100,000 population [wikipedia.org]:

    England and Wales: 0.12
    United States: 2.97

    I know where I feel safer.

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