Leave it to bloggers to find a way around censorship.
On the heels of the Olympic Games in Beijing riots broke out in the Guizhou province of China over the death of a teenager according to the Wall Street Journal. While the Chinese government worked hard to prevent this from becoming a political and PR black eye before they parade themselves on the world stage that is the Olympic Games bloggers appear to have gotten the best of them.
In order to beat China’s Internet censors, which often are employees of commercial ISP’s (take that free Internet proponents!) bloggers have started to post in ways that cannot be easily tracked like writing their posts backwards. Nice move!
The Chinese government acknowledges that their Net community is pretty sharp and seems to always find ways around the government’s Great Firewall. China has little patience for anyone who wants to exercise free speech especially with the onset of the Olympics. Recently a four year prison sentence was handed down to a blogger for his posts on an overseas dissident website www.boxun.com (check out the site in all its Chinese character beauty). There have been 24 cases in 2008 alone of arrests and/or imprisonment for reporting on events in China.
Even Twitter is being used to by folks to get the true story out to the public. Servers hosted outside of China are used as well and sophisticated methods to allow people inside of China to access blogs are used regularly.
So next time you gripe about how the Google cat and mouse game is wreaking havoc with your search marketing just relax and remember that most of the readers of Marketing Pilgrim don’t sit under the threat of imprisonment. When Google rolls out GoogleCops we can all worry a bit but until then enjoy your freedom and maybe say a prayer for the people who are risking more than just rankings.
* Read the post title backwards–we’re sneaky, just like Chinese bloggers!
About Frank Reed
Frank Reed is a partner at bnr marketing in Raleigh, NC. bnr provides SEO, PPC and blog marketing services. In addition, bnr produces SEO tools like SEMCheck for the search marketing industry. Frank’s blog on internet marketing is at www.frankthinking.com.