Wednesday, September 23, 2009

China Suspends Plans to Install Internet Filtering on PCs

September 16, 2009 - HRW: China has indefinitely suspended its plans to install internet filtering software on all new personal computers. The “Green Dam Youth Escort” filtering software attracted ire due to assessments by Human Rights Watch and others that the program, pitched as a tool to block pornographic content from personal computers, represented a much more sinister threat to privacy and choice. Human Rights Watch testified on these types of threats to free speech in front of the US Senate subcommittee on human rights and the law and wrote letters to computer manufacturers urging them not to become complicit in China’s infringement of freedoms. We helped rally public outrage at China’s attempts to curtail free expression, intrude on user privacy, and undermine user choice. Millions of Chinese internet users offered up scathing criticism as well, and our advocacy contributed to unprecedented opposition by foreign computer manufacturers and international business associations, and a threat from both the US trade representative and US secretary of commerce that Green Dam might prompt a challenge from the World Trade Organization.
OLYMPIC WATCH: Human Rights in China and Beijing 2008

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