Another day of hysteria on the Internet.
I went to the IMDb last night only to find it blocked. Very blocked. We’re not talking about dither blocking, but rather insta-blocking. The only film news vaguely relating to China was about Ang Lee casting some unknown in the film version of Yann Martel’s Life of Pi, but I didn’t think the junta hated Lee that much. Mind you, there’s no rhyme or reason to their loathing as they continue their plan to turn the Internet into a robot eunuch.
This morning I tried the IMDb again in case the site had had some problem, or it had been the victim of Nanny’s short-lived hysteria, but again, it was definitely off the menu. It was only when I went to the Guardian website that I found the possible reason for the blocking of the IMDb. (12.08.14. And then, quite some time later, the IMDb was unblocked.)
Some idiot of a woman in Chongqing announced on Τwίττεr that she was going to attend some anti-Japanese rally carrying a banner praising Lίυ Ξιάοβο, and was nicked by Pc Plod. (Guardian story.)
Now the IMDb has Τwίττεr displayed fairly prominently on its front page, which makes me wonder whether that was the cause of the site being blocked. The stupid thing is that Τwίττεr is already blocked here unless there’s a Chinese version with the usual gaping holes allowing the Paranoia++ software uninhibited access to tweets.
In addition, there’s a story on the Reg about the Νόβελ Prize website being hacked. This particular piece of malice was aimed at Firefox (although noscript would put a stop to it), but there was no information about the source of the hacking. The final paragraph mentioned a certain junta’s displeasure about the awarding of the Pέαcε Prize to a certain Lίυ Ξιάοβο. If I’d been marking the article, I would’ve questioned the relevance of the final paragraph because I’m sure that the imperium sericum would never condone such an action. Nor would the Americans or any other freedom-loving nation. [Open a window. The irony stinks in here. –ed.]
The Guardian article concludes with
China has accused the west of ideological warfare. One commentary on the People’s Daily website today was headlined: “It is an unquestionable fact that Chinese people have freedom of expression and press.”
It’s true, of course. Look up any English dictionary produced in China and you’ll find
freedom of expression (NP) – saying exactly what the Party wants you to say.
Meanwhile, the corruption index has come out, which rates New Zealand, Denmark and Singapore as the least corrupt countries in the world, and Somalia as the most corrupt. The UK comes in at 20 and the US at 22. China is 78th on the list, which puts it on a par with Greece, but way ahead of Russia at 154.
It is a little depressing to look at the map of the world and observe that there are swathes of red across South America, Africa, Eastern Europe and Asia, which would lead any outside observer to conclude that corruption is the norm on Earth, and wonder why anyone would be particularly bothered about it.