Feeds

Chinese to censor Olympic press net access

Sensitive sites blocked, despite previous assurances

SANS - Survey on application security programs

The International Olympic Committee (IOC) has admitted cutting a deal with the Chinese to allow the blocking of press access to some sensitive websites during the forthcoming Beijing games - despite previous assurances there would be no such censorship.

The IOC's press chief, Kevan Gosper, had said "internet access for the 21,500 media accredited for the August 8-24 Games would be 'open'", as Reuters puts it. However, he told the news agency yesterday: "I ... now understand that some IOC officials negotiated with the Chinese that some sensitive sites would be blocked on the basis they were not considered Games related."

Gosper elaborated: "It has been my belief, and I have expressed it consistently, that the international media would enjoy free and open access to the internet at Games time for reporting the Olympic Games and that censorship would not be an issue."

"I regret that it now appears [Olympic organiser] BOCOG has announced that there will be limitations on website access during Games time and, while I understand that sensitive material not related to the Olympic Games continues to be a matter for the Chinese, I believe BOCOG and the IOC should have conveyed a clear message to the international media, in so far as this affects internet access, at an earlier stage."

Reuters today unsuccessfully attempted to access Amnesty International's website from the main Olympic press centre, as well as sites relating to banned spiritual group Falun Gong. Amnesty "released a report on Monday slamming China for failing to honor its Olympic human rights pledges", which evidently didn't go down too well with the powers that be.

BOCOG spokesman Sun Weide insisted at a press confernece: "We are going to do our best to facilitate the foreign media to do their reporting work through the internet. I would remind you that Falun Gong is an evil fake religion which has been banned by the Chinese government.

He added: "I said we would provide sufficient, convenient internet access for foreign journalists to report on the Olympics."

While the Chinese authorities were praised for their stance on reporting the 12 May Sichuan earthquake, following their decision back in January 2007 to loosen controls over foreigners reporting in the country, "foreign media in China continue to complain of harassment by officials and Human Rights Watch released a report earlier this month saying China was not living up to its pledges".

Liu Binjie, the head of China's Ministry of Press and Publications, told Xinhua today that such criticisms defamed China "with stereotypes constructed from hearsay and prejudice in their mind, regardless of the reality".

He added that "new media regulations were being drawn up to replace those issued for the Olympics, which will expire in October", and promised: "China's open door to the foreign media will not close after the Games."

Liu concluded: "We regard the 12 May earthquake and the Olympic Games press coverage as an important test of the media operation system reforms and will explore building a more open and transparent media system after the Games." ®

High performance access to file storage

More from The Register

next story
Android engineer: We DIDN'T copy Apple OR follow Samsung's orders
Veep testifies for Samsung during Apple patent trial
MtGox chief Karpelès refuses to come to US for g-men's grilling
Bitcoin baron says he needs another lawyer for FinCEN chat
Did a date calculation bug just cost hard-up Co-op Bank £110m?
And just when Brit banking org needs £400m to stay afloat
One year on: diplomatic fail as Chinese APT gangs get back to work
Mandiant says past 12 months shows Beijing won't call off its hackers
Don't let no-hire pact suit witnesses call Steve Jobs a bullyboy, plead Apple and Google
'Irrelevant' character evidence should be excluded – lawyers
EFF: Feds plan to put 52 MILLION FACES into recognition database
System would identify faces as part of biometrics collection
Ex-Tony Blair adviser is new top boss at UK spy-hive GCHQ
Robert Hannigan to replace Sir Iain Lobban in the autumn
Alphadex fires back at British Gas with overcharging allegation
Brit colo outfit says it paid for 347KVA, has been charged for 1940KVA
Jack the RIPA: Blighty cops ignore law, retain innocents' comms data
Prime minister: Nothing to see here, go about your business
Banks slap Olympus with £160 MEEELLION lawsuit
Scandal hit camera maker just can't shake off its past
prev story

Whitepapers

Designing a defence for mobile apps
In this whitepaper learn the various considerations for defending mobile applications; from the mobile application architecture itself to the myriad testing technologies needed to properly assess mobile applications risk.
3 Big data security analytics techniques
Applying these Big Data security analytics techniques can help you make your business safer by detecting attacks early, before significant damage is done.
Five 3D headsets to be won!
We were so impressed by the Durovis Dive headset we’ve asked the company to give some away to Reg readers.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Securing web applications made simple and scalable
In this whitepaper learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.