Don't blame the government
When Google failed to pop up on the screen today, I feared the worst. Google and TPTB (the powers that be) have been at loggerheads for some time now, and us ex-pats wondered how long it would be before the whole site went the way of YouTube and Facebook and got blocked. But for once it wasn't (entirely) the government's fault. Google have now admitted that yesterday they added the characters "gs_rfai" to the URLs of searches from China for "statistical purposes". However, China has long blocked any URLs with "rfa" in them, as "Radio Free Asia" (RFA) is seen as a source of anti-Chinese propaganda. So all Google searches were, for a while, blocked too! It seems Google has now fixed the problem, as their site was back up again by the evening. What a game!
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Paul Hider lives and works in Kunming (SW China) and regularly updates this blog about his life there.
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