Friday, January 22, 2010

Unequal and undemocratic information flow


China complained that attacks on its censorship of the internet amount to... wait for it... information imperialism. The Global Times (published in English by the People’s Daily) explains (and I’ll quote at length because I gather that Chinese pro-censorship diatribes against Google have themselves been censored today, so this may not continue to be available on the web) that the “bulk of the information flowing from the US and other Western countries is loaded with aggressive rhetoric against those countries that do not follow their lead.” Further, disadvantaged countries “could not produce the massive flow of information required, and could never rival the Western countries in terms of information control and dissemination,” therefore, “there is absolutely no equality and fairness. The online freedom of unrestricted access is, thus, only one-way traffic, contrary to the spirit of democracy and calculated to strengthen a monopoly.” “China’s real stake in the ‘free flow of information’ is evident in its refusal to be victimized by information imperialism.”

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