Posted by: Blue Heavens | 12 January, 2007

Blogging in China

Well, the latest milestone of the blog scene in China – the number of bloggers hit 20.8 million at the end of 2006. I believe at the rate that this number is increasing, coupled with the fact that computer literacy and ownership is fast rising in China, who knows what this number would balloon to at the end of 2007.

IMHO, this number doesn’t interest me. I’m just stating a fact that is reported here. What I would be interested in knowing and watching, would be the clash in ideology of the communist state of China and the democracy of the World Wide Web. It simply doesn’t go together. The web is a platform based on Americanism, which denotes democracy, liberty and capitalism. In the blogging sense, it means freedom of speech online, so whatever I say online would is my own opinion and basically my own problem. However, this would always be a debatable topic. The cases in Singapore of internet defamation in the past year has utmostly spilled into the real world.

What I’m worried now is, that my online persona, a fictitious character that is churned out by my pure imagination, would be directly affecting my position in the real world. What we tend to enjoy being a character of our own creation, is affecting our well-being offline. This is totally against the reason why the world wide web grew to where it is today. Going back to the piece of news article about blogging in China, putting bloggers in check by registering every single person who uses the net is just becoming Big Brother. There are a couple of issues to deal with the implementation of that security measure.

  1. Basic privacy is breached. There is someone watching you out there. Imagine someone knowing your account number and password when you use internet banking, or your credit card details when you make a purchase online.
  2. Security can never be compromised. Would it be a 100% safe database. I’m sure that there’ll be millions of hackers out there trying their luck at cracking the code behind this piece of information which is literally listing every single computer literate human in China.
  3. Will this become a prelude of the next cultural revolution in China? Since you have every single detail about every computer literate person in China, it will be at a snap of fingers that everyone on this list would be exterminated.
  4. Most importantly, it restricts the freedom of speech online. Well, what does the “crime” refer to in the article? An act of fraud? Hacking? Or just simply a posting on the blog that criticises the government?

I believe this list can go on and on and on and on. But one thing is, as technology improves at an exponential rate, human ethical issues are the ones which are keeping this in control. Freedom and liberty are broad terms which affect the right to clone and the right not to be. I only believe in the faith of the internet and moral values of the community behind building it, which is everyone of us.

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