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Re: Bay Networks in bed with commie censors?
From: Tony Li <tli () jnx com>
Date: Wed, 15 Jan 1997 23:32:52 -0800 (PST)


   >Perhaps you should consider both sides of the situation.  As you know,
   >there is no serious networking infrastructure in China now.

   Well, there was enough to scare the government into overt censorship.

Sorry, no.  Censorship was a _precondition_ of this deployment.

   Initially, the academic Chinese Internet was not censored at all
   (i know that for sure, Sprint provided the circuit, and configured
   their routers).

In fact, you are incorrect.  Please do not infer that traffic monitoring
had to happen in the routers.  I'm quite certain that Bay, for example, is
not installing new features to aid this.

   >Will creating one decrease or increase the free flow of information?

   Guess.  I've seen state-run networks in a communist country;
   thanks.  They're value-subtracted.

Comapred to other networks?  Certainly.  However, it's still more than no
network.

   The problem is the same as with "voluntary" key escrow -- once they
   get that in place and taking care of needs of loyal citizens, there
   won't be any need for the carriers not controlled by the government.

I think you're confused.  There are no carriers that aren't controlled by
the government.  In fact, there are no carriers that _aren't_ the
government.

   This is a state network.  If they can't keep up they can slow it
   down.  They did that with postal mail for decades.

Or, they can turn it off.  Should they?

   Also, do not forget that digital communications are much easier
   to alanlyze -- even trivial keyword matching is very efficient.

Ah yes, but recall that it's in Unicode, not English.  A tad more fun.  ;-)

   >I should point out that the government already has installed satellite
    TV to 
   >pretty much every corner of the country.  However, the receivers are all
   >state-controlled.  Would you rip this out?

   What satellite do they point at?  Where the feed comes from?

Sorry, I don't know which one.  I do know that the feed is very carefully
regulated.  They get CNN, ESPN, and a couple of "clean" Hong Kong MTV
knock-offs. 

   >Is no CNN better than censored CNN?

   A lot better.  The old truism is that the most effective lie is
   entirely composed from truth.  Soviet TV used to show quite a lot
   of Western footage -- with "creative" translation and editing.
   Needless to say, often the meaning was quite opposite to that of
   the original.

Well, here's where we fundamentally disagree.

   Would you send anything critical of the regime if you knew that everything
   you write is going right into the secret police's dossiers?

You have to ask _ME_ that?  ;-)

   >IMnsHO, the installation of this network will be the nail in the coffin of
   >the Chinese government.  I'm more than happy to see them drive it in.

   I wish it was like that.  However, it just doesn't work this way.
   The only reason for the existence of that network is the desire
   of the state to control the flow of the information.  

If that were true, then they'd simply cut it off.

Tony

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