The Great Firewall of China

For many, the internet serves as a venue for ultimate freedom, whether of expression, knowledge or more, ahem, interesting pursuits. However, for some around the world, the internet is merely another source of repression, yet another forum where personal freedoms can be restricted. Most notably, China has taken measures to ensure that its population is not able to express ideas freely, seek out unapproved sources of knowledge and utilize the same types of social media which have proven disruptive to regimes in the Middle East. One of the grandest and most well-known of the tools of this control is a system dubbed the 'Golden Shield' by those who wield it and 'The Great Firewall of China' to most everyone else.

For those interested in The Great Firewall there are many resources available...at least from western sources. For a comparison between two towns, one within and one directly outside the virtual barrier, see the PCMag.com article Life Behind the Great Firewall of China by Sascha Segan here. For more on an experience with the system that was a little too close for comfort for its author readers can visit a Wired piece by Oliver August here. Meanwhile, Forbes.com has an article on potential military and security uses in an Andy Greenberg piece here. For information on the fallout that Cisco has faced for its participation in the engineering of The Wall, readers can visit The Washington Times here. Finally, for some additional background as well as some of the conundrums the Firewall has caused for western companies, see the Hungry Beast video below.

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