Amnesty's new campaign.
Writing about web page http://www.Irrepressible.info
Ah, my first post here; I was almost temped to go with a post–troll. Instead I'm going with Amnesty International (which might be tantamount to the same thing). Amnesty is launching a campaign aimed at highlighting the way repressive governments use control of the Internet to control their citizens. The obvious example here is China, who have been using the latest spy tech and good ol' fashioned repression in person to keep people from discussing anything dangerous (that means “democracy” or “what happened at Tienanmen square?”). The most scary thing about China is how effective they've been being at it. Hackers are good at what they do but for the most part the government is wining.
One thing which is good to see on their website which has been set up as part of this effort (Irrepressible.info) is that they mention the man who was arrested after “yahoo!” handed over information on which evil decenter was discussing democracy (how dear he do so on a yahoo account)... he's now spending 10 years at the pleasure of the Chinese government.
Well, they are getting together a petition, as they do, which will be given to the UN. This will do absolutely nothing. Still, if it can raise awareness then at least we can… well… do nothing. Simple facts of the matter is that we can't do anything to stop China doing this to its people – neither can our government. The security council countries just need to keep in each others good books too much; so trying to change their domestic politics is out… I don't want to sound cynical but our government won't do anything about this for the same reason they didn't ask China to put more pressure on in the latest talks about Sudan (where they carry a lot of influence) – we're saving up all the good will just in case we want to go after Iran – and we'll need the Chinese support (or at least acquiescence) for that one.
Oh well, just my take on it.