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Internet censorship in the People's Republic of China

Internet censorship in the People's Republic of China is conducted under a wide variety of laws and administrative regulations. In accordance with these laws, more than sixty Internet regulations have been made by the [People's Republic of China] (PRC) government, and censorship systems are vigorously implemented by provincial branches of state-owned [ISP] s, business companies, and organizations.

Most national laws of the People's Republic of China do not apply to the [Special Administrative Region] s of [Hong Kong] or [Macau] . There are no known cases of the PRC authorities censoring critical political or religious content in those areas.

The escalation of the government's effort to neutralize critical online opinion comes after a series of large anti-Japanese, anti-pollution and anti-corruption protests, many of which were organized or publicized using [instant messaging] services, chat rooms, and [text message] s. The size of the [Internet police] is estimated at more than 30,000. Critical comments appearing on [Internet forum] s, [blog] s, and major portals such as [Sohu] and [Sina] usually are erased within minutes.

The apparatus of the PRC's Internet repression is considered more extensive and more advanced than in any other country in the world. The regime not only blocks website content but also monitors the internet access of individuals. [Amnesty International] notes that China “has the largest recorded number of imprisoned journalists and cyber-dissidents in the world.” The offences of which they are accused include communicating with groups abroad, opposing the persecution of the [Falun Gong] , signing online petitions, and calling for reform and an end to corruption.


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