Feeds

As China rises on the net, website numbers shrink

Government crackdown blacks out 1.4 million sites

New hybrid storage solutions

Even as reports put Chinese as the number two language of the Internet, behind only English, strict government control is reducing the number of Websites within China.

With 457 million Internet users behind the Great Firewall, China’s online boom has matched its long economic boom; the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences (CASS) says in 2000, the country only had around 22.5 million users.

However, in the last year the government has reasserted its strict state control over what all those Chinese-speakers can access: 41 percent of the Websites that existed at the beginning of 2010 had disappeared by the end of that year. From more than 3 million Websites at the start of the year, the total had fallen to just 1.91 million by the end.

CASS cites “pornography” as the main reason for shutdowns, although there’s the usual suspicion that the government is also cracking down on political dissent.

There is, however, an aspect of the data that suggests another force could also be at work. Although the number of sites fell, the CASS study found that the number of pages grew. The state-sponsored agency gave this as evidence of thriving free speech on China’s Internet. CASS media spokesperson Liu Ruisheng is quoted by AFP as saying “our content is getting stronger, while our supervision is getting more strict and more regulated”.

CASS says 60 billion new pages were created during 2010, even though these are hosted on a falling number of domains. In other words, China’s iron control of Internet content is consolidating the number of content hosts in that country.

It certainly wouldn’t surprise El Reg to find that content control was, either intentionally or otherwise, helping concentrate the market power of major hosts, in a country famous for using market control to favour insider capital. ®

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk

More from The Register

next story
Net neutrality protestors slam the brakes on their OWN websites
Sites link up to protest slow lanes by bogging down pages
Found inside ISIS terror chap's laptop: CELINE DION tunes
REPORT: Stash of terrorist material found in Syria Dell box
Uber alles-holes, claims lawsuit: Taxi biz sued by blind passengers
Sueball claims blind passengers ditched, guide dogs abused
Drag queens: Oh, don't be so bitchy, Facebook! Let us use our stage names
Handbags at dawn over free content ad network's ID policy
Italy's High Court orders HP to refund punter for putting Windows on PC
Top beaks slam bundled OS as 'commercial policy of forced distribution'
Show us your Five-Eyes SECRETS says Privacy International
Refusal to disclose GCHQ canteen menus and prices triggers Euro Human Rights Court action
Heavy VPN users are probably pirates, says BBC
And ISPs should nab 'em on our behalf
prev story

Whitepapers

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops
Balancing user privacy and privileged access, in accordance with compliance frameworks and legislation. Evaluating any potential remote control choice.
Intelligent flash storage arrays
Tegile Intelligent Storage Arrays with IntelliFlash helps IT boost storage utilization and effciency while delivering unmatched storage savings and performance.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.
Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk
A single remote control platform for user support is be key to providing an efficient helpdesk. Retain full control over the way in which screen and keystroke data is transmitted.