China shuts down the NYT’s Sina Weibo account

The New York Times has launched its online Chinese editionand social media account on Sina Weibo last week, conducting an experiment of press freedom in China, TechCrunch reported.

The results? For starters, the newspaper’s  Sina Weibo account was deactivated July 4.
It is obvious “the Great Wall of China” has taken measures to prevent the Chinese people from interacting with the NYT. Because Sina Weibo, the “Chinese Twitter,” allows the Chinese people to share news immediately with each other, it is the perfect platform for the NYT to use to connect with them too, making that account a target for the Chinese government, TechCrunch suggested.
The disappearance of NYT’s social media account on Sina Weibo was first found by Great Fire, a Chinese Internet Monitoring service. Great Fire notes that the NYT is not the first international media that be treated under severe censorship. YouTube and Twitter have already been blocked by China’s firewall. In addition, only 25 percent of the population in China are able to access Bloomberg’s website, according to Great Fire.

“We’re not tailoring it to the demands of the Chinese government, so we’re not operating like a Chinese media company,” editor Joseph Kahn told the company’s Media Decoder blog last week. “China operates a very vigorous firewall. We have no control over that. We hope and expect that Chinese officials will welcome what we’re doing.”

The good news is that the NYT’s Chinese website is still running, though it may be blocked anytime. Mashable reported that the decision to block an entire domain,  such as the NYT’s Chinese website, would presumably come from a high-level government agency, such as the State Council Information Office or the Chinese Communist Party’s Propaganda Department.

In contrast to the regular NYT website, the Chinese edition hasn’t implemented a paywall yet.
Image:  Mashable
This entry was posted in censorship, New York Times, paywall, Sina Weibo. Bookmark the permalink.

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