Home » China Is Struggling to Censor Zero-COVID Protest Videos, Experts Say

China Is Struggling to Censor Zero-COVID Protest Videos, Experts Say

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  • Experts say China is having trouble censoring videos of demonstrations against its zero-coronavirus policy.
  • The country’s censorship machinery is overwhelmed by the mass protest content.
  • Some protesters are finding creative ways to circumvent China’s Great Firewall, reports the NYT.

china is One of the world’s most sophisticated censorship devicesresponsible for blocking photos, messages, and videos that the country deems to be expressions of opposition.

But protesters were unhappy China’s Restrictive Zero COVID Policy Ally Funk, director of research for technology and democracy at the nonprofit Freedom House, says it has successfully breached China’s “Great Firewall.”

“The sheer number of people expressing themselves online today, combined with innovative circumvention techniques, maximizes the government’s ability to censor,” Funk told an insider.

Protests erupted last month after an apartment fire in the Xinjiang Uighur Autonomous Region city of Urumqi killed 10 residents. reported by an insiderLocals claimed they might have survived had the country’s COVID-19 restrictions been lifted.

As of earlier this week, 23 protests have spread across 17 cities in China. CNN reportedProtesters say it’s unusual to see protests of this scale under the leadership of President Xi Jinping.

Hundreds of videos of marches and rallies against government COVID restrictions continue to circulate on social media sites such as WeChat and Douyin. The New York Times reported.

Experts told The Times that the flood of videos is overwhelming China’s censorship software and human censorship teams.

Yaqiu Wang, a senior Chinese researcher who studies internet censorship for Human Rights Watch, said the sheer scale of the content reflects how disgusted Chinese people are with the way their government treats them. .

“Governments and social media companies are doing everything they can to stop the spread of information related to protests because they know that grievances are entrenched and courage is contagious.” Wang told Insider.

Protesters in Chengdu were seen shouting “Resign, Xi Jinping” and “No dictatorship.” According to a video reviewed by CNN.

Protesters were reportedly filmed clashing with police in parts of southern China. Times.

“People across the country are similarly frustrated, and many directly point to the one-party, one-party dictatorship as the cause of their suffering,” Wang said. “Everyone wants to live with dignity and have a say in how they are governed.”

Protesters have also found creative ways to circumvent firewalls. Some internet users have reportedly circumvented content censorship by flipping videos, adding filters, and even recording videos of videos to confuse censorship algorithms. Times.

Some people turn to VPN software to access Twitter and Instagram, which are platforms banned in China. Times.

They covertly express their frustration by posting blank sheets of paper and single words like “good” and “okay” on social media. reported by Bloomberg.

Twitter and Telegram, also blocked in China, have become the country’s most popular apps during the protests. According to South China Morning Post.

“Although the party’s grip on power is firm, the people’s deep aspirations for freedom and democracy are still deeply feared by the party,” Wang said.

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