Communications and Society blog: By and for students in Marist COM 201

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No Internet in China?!

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Did you know that China just lifted an Internet ban that was placed in Western China ten months ago?

Can you imagine if you didn’t have the Internet for ten months? And furthermore, because your government banned it from you? So there would be nothing you could do about it.

Now that I have become so engulfed in the digital age, I think things like, but how would I check my e-mail? By in close touch with important contacts? Be available to communicate?

Apparently, so are the people in Western China, even after a ten-month hiatus. According to the NYT article, “many residents in cities across Xinjiang took the day off from school or work to rush to Internet cafes, where they pored through months of unread e-mail messages or chatted over instant messaging.”

They took the day off from school and work! It’s as if this return of the Internet is a celebrated holiday. Can you believe that?

I wonder if in the end the Internet just has us captive, we are slaves to it and we cannot help ourselves. We rely so heavily on it that we go through withdrawal when its not around and rejoice it when it returns.

Apparently, the Internet was being blamed for causing problems between ethnic groups in the area, being the mode for which to create hostility. It was seen to have possibly caused the deadly rioting that happened in the area. As a result, it was turned off completely to all citizens in the area. Not only that, but  “after the initial rioting, the government cut off Internet service and cellphone text messaging across Xinjiang”.

Text messaging too?

Part of me feels as if people are not being treated justly by these events, and it seems like the government is playing parent to the Chinese people, its’ little children. And part of me says that we should be able to do without these technologies, and it shouldn’t be a big deal if we don’t have them. Lots of mixed feelings..

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Written by caradomings

May 23, 2010 at 12:11 am

Posted in Uncategorized

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