17 November 2002
Jonathan Zittrain and Benjamin Edelman, working for the Berkman Center for Internet & Society at Harvard Law, have an ongoing project to document Internet filtering in various forms and fashions. One of the subprojects this fall is the determination of sites blocked by the government of the People's Republic of China. Described as "an experiment in open research," Zittrain and Edelman have worked up a system whereby any URL can be entered and then tested in real-time (within two minutes) to see if it is accessible to Chinese Internet users.
Needless to say, I had to try this out for myself, and by gum, according to this testing regime, this site is blocked. Presumably no one from the Chinese mainland is authorized to view any of my stuff. This explains one phenomenon: an earlier version of the Music Room here was once duplicated, from first byte to last, and pasted onto some Chinese Web site. They even copied my counter code, which is how I found out about it in the first place. The hits (never more than one or two a day, but what the hell) dried up this summer, and perhaps now I know why.
(Muchas gracias: John Little, The Blogs of War. He's blocked too.)