8/17/2009

《华盛顿邮报》社论:中国的大防火墙



China's Great Firewall

The Green Dam episode suggests that the West has some influence in preserving Internet freedom.

Editorial
The Washington Post
Monday, August 17, 2009

LAST THURSDAY, China's Ministry of Industry and Information Technology announced its withdrawal of requirements that Green Dam Internet censorship software come pre-installed on all computers. This victory is not unblemished. China is continuing to install the software in computers at Internet cafes and universities. And some manufacturers continue to include it with computers shipped to the country. But the outcome -- although not perfect -- is a success for the Chinese people and the cause of Internet freedom.

The prevailing argument from Western companies that have been dealing with China has often been that of inevitability -- if we don't accept Chinese demands, someone else will. But the successful pushback against Green Dam by computer manufacturers and the State Department suggests another possibility: If everyone remains firm, we can achieve results.

The principle that Green Dam embodied -- centering censorship at the level not of the network but of the individual computer -- was pernicious. But there was a lot wrong with the software itself. It was poorly constructed, with security vulnerabilities that could have enabled hackers to turn the entire Chinese computer network into a malicious botnet. Even as censorship software, it had problems: It worked only in Internet Explorer, not in Firefox or Google's Chrome. The decision to cease requiring Green Dam may have turned on pragmatic concerns as well as industry objections.

Green Dam, with all its inefficiencies, was just another brick in China's Great Firewall. In the face of its people's efforts to elude censors and use the Internet to access information freely, China has an incredibly complex system of censorship that operates on multiple levels, from programs that detect proscribed keywords and delete them to human beings whose job is to trawl the Internet for potentially seditious postings and delete them. Although there are cracks in the wall, China still effectively controls much of the flow of information. Even without Green Dam, it shut down YouTube and Twitter in preparation for the 20th anniversary of Tiananmen Square.

That's why commitment to anti-censorship technologies remains essential. The key to freedom for the Chinese people is free access to information. Even if some Western companies continue to kowtow to Chinese demands -- for instance, in the realm of search censorship -- the availability of technology to evade China's firewall will make such limitations less meaningful. But until the Great Firewall falls, the lesson of Green Dam is clear: If industries stand together to oppose unreasonable demands, China is willing to listen. Doing business with China does not have to mean accepting its terms when they are unjust.

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美国之音:美国媒体评中国(2009年8月17日)

Aug 17, 2009

以下是美国各地主要媒体有关中国的社评。社评所反映的观点为发表社评媒体之观点,并不一定代表美国之音的观点。

*华盛顿邮报*

华盛顿邮报8月17日发表社论,题目是“中国的大防火墙”。社论说,“中国工业和信息化部上星期四宣布撤销在所有的电脑上装设互联网信息过滤软件绿坝的规定。但中国继续在网吧和大学的电脑装设这种软件。这种结局虽然不够完美,但对中国人民和互联网自由来说仍然是一个成功。”

华盛顿邮报的社论说,“跟中国打交道的西方公司大都常常说,接受中国当局的要求是不可避免的,假如我们不接受,别的公司也会接受。但是,电脑制造厂商和美国国务院成功阻挡绿坝,显示出另一种可能性,这就是假如大家都保持立场坚定,我们就能够获得成果。”

华盛顿邮报的社论说,“带有各种缺陷的绿坝只是中国的大防火墙上的一块砖头。面对中国人民设法突破新闻检查、使用互联网自由获取信息的努力,中国设置了一套令人难以置信的复杂的多层新闻检查系统,从可以探测违禁关键词并予以删除的软件,到配备人员专门在互联网上搜罗可能是颠覆性的帖子并予以删除。尽管中国的网络防火墙上出现了一些裂缝,中国依然是有效地大部控制着信息流通。即使是没有绿坝,在天安门事件20周年到来之际,中国也照样关闭了YouTube以及Twitter。”

华盛顿邮报的社论说,“这就是为什么致力于反新闻检查技术依然是至关重要的。但是,在中国网络防火墙倒塌之前,绿坝的教训是明显的:假如有关行业站在一起反对不合理的要求,中国是愿意倾听的。跟中国做买卖并不一定是意味着接受其不公正的条件。”

本篇英文全文网址:
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2009/08/16/AR2009081601697.html

*华尔街日报*

华尔街日报亚洲版8月16号发表一篇未署名的评论,题目是“绿坝的死亡:反新闻检查战斗的一次小胜利”。评论说,“上个星期四,中国工业和信息化部部长李毅中宣布绿坝软件的使用要‘由消费者决定’。这是收回了今年5月要求电脑制造厂商在所有在中国出售的电脑上安装绿坝软件的命令。”

华尔街日报的评论说,“那项命令一发出,立即引起愤怒的反应。电脑工业界协会给温家宝总理写公开信,中国众多的博客也加入了这场战斗。在国外,美国贸易代表柯克以及商业部长骆家辉要求中国收回命令,并暗示这项命令违反世界贸易组织的多项规定。美国的一家私营公司声称绿坝非法大块抄袭其程序,并给美国的电脑制造厂商发函要它们不许使用绿坝。”

华尔街日报的评论说,“李毅中表示,中国当局之所以改弦更张,是因为当初的管理规定措辞含糊。但是,中国领导人更有可能是因为意识到,强制安装绿坝所付出的政治代价不值得。”

本篇英文全文网址:
http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052970204409904574353601830265602.html

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以上是美国各地主要媒体有关中国的社评。社评所反映的观点为发表社评媒体之观点,并不一定代表美国之音的观点。

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