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Tuesday, October 24, 2017

See The Top 10 Most Surprising Things Banned in China And Reasons For Their Ban

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China is known for its control over all aspects of society. Did you know that some of the world most popular websites, celebrities, and films are being banned in China? Well we've brought to you the list of Top 10 most surprising things banned in China:

Top 10 Things Banned in China 

10. Online Dating

In 2010, the Chinese military became increasingly concerned that soldiers were leaking government secrets through social media, so the government issued a series of strict regulations soldiers must follow when using the Internet. Included among those restrictions was a blanket ban on online dating for the military’s 2.3 million soldiers, as well a prohibition on “making friends” through social networking sites.

9. Gambling

If you want to hit up some casinos and try to win big while in China, think again! Beijing outlawed gambling in 1949, and casinos aren’t allowed to operate in China. The only gambling allowed is two state-run lotteries. The laws are so strict even advertising nearby casinos in other countries is forbidden.

8. Giving birth to many babies

Since the late 1970s the Chinese regime allowed families to have only one child as a population control measure targeting large urban centers in particular. This is known as "One child policy" Women impregnated a second time must abort their child, or in some areas, pay an enormous fine. This policy has produced social imbalances as parents abort or abandon baby girls due to their preference for sons.
At the beginning of 2016 the Chinese government relaxed its family planning laws to allow all married couples to have a second child. The new policy came into effect in March after formal ratification by the National People’s Congress. It is called the "Two Child Policy"

7. Snapchat

The popular image-sharing mobile app, Snapchat was also blocked by the Chinese government, after claiming that the app could store personal information about Chinese citizens on servers outside China. However, Chinese citizens do not seem to require the mobile-based app due to the exponential growth of a Chinese equivalent known as QQ which has around 73 million users in the country only.

6. Pinterest

In March, 2017, Pinterest became one of the most recent website to be banned by the Chinese government. The ban was quite surprising, to say the least to its users as the usual content on Pinterest is not considered as polarizing or sensitive to national security. The content shared by Pinterest users is usually fashion oriented and therefore critics do not believe the ban was politically instigated but could be a protectionist move from Beijing. Several local websites have sprung up to fill the void left by Pinterest including BABA, an Alibaba affiliate.

5. Youtube

YouTube is banned by the Chinese Communist Party and Internet doesn’t get along very well in China. Ever since the Internet made its way into China, the Chinese Communist Party has heavily censored and regulated it with their “Great Firewall of China”. The great Firewall of China is a system of censorship by which the government blocks many websites that the government seems as counter-Revolutionary and filters results from the Internet search is initiated from computers in Mainland China.

YouTube was first banned in China on October 2007 to March 2008 and after that, it was again blocked in March 2009. As at the time of composing this article,  YouTube is not accessible from China.

4. Instagram

Instagram was another major image-sharing mobile app to be banned in China. The Chinese government banned the mobile app on September 19th, 2014. The ban was as a result of the usage of the mobile app by participants of the 2014 pro-democracy protests that had engulfed the city of Hong Kong. The participants of the protests used Instagram to share images on the happenings in the city while urging other citizens to join in. Despite the protests ending, the ban on the mobile app was never lifted and is still enforced to date.

3. Twitter

Social media giant, Twitter was banned in China in June 2009 as the country was about to observe the 20th anniversary of the Tiananmen Massacre. Beijing was nervous of the use of social media by Chinese citizens which the government felt could be used by dissidents to spread inflammatory information. According to the Chinese government, the social media website was banned for contravening China’s media censorship laws. However, the absence of Twitter in China does not create a vacuum as Chinese social media fanatics use the popular local equivalent, Weibo. Despite the ban, Twitter has about 10 million users in China who use VPNs to breach the government’s firewall.

2. Facebook

The biggest social media site, Facebook was blocked in China in July 2009. The social media site had enjoyed widespread usage all over China but events in 2009 led to the decision by the Chinese government to block it. In July 2009 the Xingjiang activists used Facebook to organize widespread violent riots which led to the death of about 200 people, many of whom were women and children. These protests which became to be known as the Urumqi Riots was the last straw and caused the Chinese government to block Facebook in China. China has stood by this decision despite frequent visits by Facebook’s founder, Mark Zuckerberg to Beijing.

1. Google

Despite ranking at first place in the Alexa Rankings and being the number-one search engine in the world, Google is banned in China. The ban also encompasses Google-affiliated sites such as Gmail, Picasa and Google Maps. Google was blocked by the Chinese government in 2014 but some Google-affiliated sites such as Google Plus and Google Docs were blocked earlier in 2011. The Chinese government justified the ban due to the fact that the Google intended to store information about Chinese use on non-Chinese servers which is unacceptable to China. The Beijing-based government is also not comfortable with the freedom of access Google users have, and therefore Chinese citizens could potentially have access to inflammatory content from the internet and filtering of such content individually is problematic even using the Great Firewall. Other explanations are rather controversial including a theory which claims that the decision to block Google in China was to encourage the domestic use of the Chinese-alternative search engine, Baidu whose content is subject to Chinese censorship.


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