The Great Firewall of China: Coming to a Browser Near You

27 Oct 2008
China Channel Firefox Add-on

Now anyone can have the frustration of the Great Firewall of China in the comfort of his own home, thanks to the China Channel Firefox Add-on:

> The Firefox add-on China Channel offers internet users outside of China the ability to surf the web as if they were inside mainland China. Take an unforgetable virtual trip to China and experience the technical expertise of the Chinese Ministry of Information Industry (supported by western companies). It’s open source, free and easy.

Via TechCrunch.

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John Pasden

John is a Shanghai-based linguist and entrepreneur, founder of AllSet Learning.

Comments

  1. So. since they have been able to recreate the GFW.. any chance they have the key to the front door of the real one?

    R

  2. What I’m wondering is… will Chinese websites (especially videos from Tudou etc) load faster once I use this add-on since it looks like all it does is use a Chinese proxy?

  3. Wow! Somebody actually spent some the few precious moments that we each have on planet earth making a virtual censorship tool??!! I presume that it emulates the GFW in real time.

  4. ha, reverse engineer it! 🙂 or run it backwards!

  5. I think this is meant to be used for people wanting to download stuff from Baidu but can’t because they’re outside of China. Can anyone confirm?

  6. This is actually really cool. For instance you can download the latest songs from Baidu, which are allowed in China, but blocked in the outside!

  7. Instead of Baidu just use Sogo!

  8. The Chinese connection is very slow, but Baidu works!

  9. After downloading it yesterday, a few additional remarks:

    ~You can, indeed, download from Baidu. I have tried, but I’m not sure how much use I’ll get out of that.

    ~You can also go onto Wikipedia and a bunch of other sites that are blocked in China while using the Proxy. I even managed to go onto the “Tibetan Independence” page with the proxy engaged. I really wasn’t expecting that. So, it doesn’t really simulate the Great Firewall of China.

    ~I, for one, seem unable to post comments here while on the “China Channel.” I get sent back to the page without the comment being posted. So, I have to turn off the Proxy to comment.

  10. hobielover, wikipedia seems to be working fine now most of the time, as long as I’m not looking for ‘controversial’ subjects.

    On a related note, the Australian govt is now going the China route by developing filters that are supposed to stop people from seeing anything they think people shouldn’t be…originally the idea was that it would stop child porn, but the minister now responsible is saying other things such as anorexia and drug sites will be blocked. It seems our new govt wants to get voted out at the next election with this piece of fascist legisaltion.

  11. @ hobielover

    Wikipedia isn’t blocked in China, nor is the tibet independence movement wikipedia page (at least, not in English). I’m currently in China, no proxy or anything, just regular old internet, and I use wikipedia all the time…

  12. When did Wikipedia start working again, then? It doesn’t seem that I go to any sites that are blocked, then, which I wasn’t expecting. The way people in the US talk about the Great Firewall made me think that there was more to it. I knew the sites about Chinese music I look at aren’t blocked, but I didn’t expect certain other sites to not be blocked, either. I thought that YouTube was not working right now in China, but I could use that, and I had also been told that Photobucket wasn’t working in China, but I also went there. What exactly is blocked, then?

  13. No need for Australians to get the plugin because our government is in the final stages of a “great firewall” of their own. The initial plan was to have an opt-out ability for all consumers, which changed to a multi-layered system where only parts could be opted out from. Now though it seems the plan is to be pretty much identical to China, with the Australian govt steering the boat on what is allowed and is not allowed.

    I don’t mind the filtration of terrorism, child porn, and illegal sites in general.. That makes sense.. But they are talking about filtering sites that “might” offend or go against what the government deems as socially acceptable.

    From a govt with completely outlandish views and slow uptake on what the peoplereally want, when it comes to technology and the internet… the effects of this could be disastrous and not just at a national level. I can really see a big potential for this to go pear shaped very quickly… but may be it will spawn a new social revolution, which might actually be a good thing. Only time will tell of course but for the moment it looks pretty grim..

  14. @ hobielover

    in all honesty, the only things I’ve found blocked are the Students for a Free Tibet site (makes sense) and icanhascheezburger.com (does NOT make sense).

  15. This is CUTE! Now we know Communism will finally come to the world…

  16. kastner Says:

    This is CUTE! Now we know Communism will finally come to the world…

    Wow. Good that you realized that. FINALLY.

    BTW. your words only indicates that you are pretty ideological, consciously or unconsciously. Being ideological means you are brainwashed as well. There’s been nothing wrong with Communism itself. Read more please.

  17. yeah communism is great fior some countries it would seem.

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