Rethinking China’s “Green” Dam

Posted by on Jul 2, 2009 in China, Media Appearances | No Comments

21:04 (UTC+08:00), 02 JUL 2009 | CHN BEIJING
ITEM FIRST POSTED BEFORE 01 JUL 2011

2009 07 01 Jianwai Camera 800

As of late, more and more people in China are expressing concern about Green Dam — new software that’s supposed to keep people away from “unhealthy” sites, but which others have concerns about regarding content control and general security. This doesn’t make it quite “green” at all!

Lately, I’ve been interviewed by lots of media, both online and offline, in the UK and elsewhere. My concerns expressed were less political / “censorship”-related, and far more issues regarding how secure the new software was, as well the existing issue of sites in China that already have low-brow content in the form of controversial ads. Some content were already quite “suggestive” — even on officially approved sites!

The most interesting thing that happened was that during one of the interviews, late-breaking news came and I was informed the plan to roll out such filtering applications would not go ahead. I still expressed my concern, though, about how secure the software would be. To me, it simply didn’t make sense to install buggy software that was supposed to “protect” you!

By the way: the picture you’re seeing is what I looked into as I went live on television — very likely, a first for me!