China has always been known to be very secretive country because it does not allow its people the freedom of information.
It makes it very hard for its people to use things and applications such as Facebook, Whatsapp, Twitter and Wikipedia.
This is because the government wants to regulate the types of information that goes in and out of the country which can really get stressful especially when its involving business.
What is Wikipedia?
Have you ever tried researching for something but always find this very nicely organized page full of great history called Wikipedia?
Yes, Wikipedia Is a website but it is also an online encyclopedia.
It is non-profit because the co-Founder Jimmy Wales believe that information should be human right and should be made available to everyone, for free.
Wikipedia earned its reputation as being credible and reliable especially the fact that they do not receive money from the government because it wants to keep itself pure of corruption and manipulation.
Although the intel are written by people, the information has to go through a lot of processes to ensure purity so no, you cannot fake a biography of yourself to impress your friends.
Why is Wikipedia Blocked in China?
Believe it or not, Wikipedia was actually allowed in China back in 2001.
But it was then blocked in 2004 due to an article Wikipedia wrote about the Tiananmen Square protests of 1989.
Many people actually loved the article because it is real and unbiased, NOT controlled by the Chinese government.
However the government didn’t like that article one bit because the incident was clearly a bad image for the country and its politicians so that moment onwards, they decided to ban Wikipedia.
The whole country was in anger because everyone knows Wikipedia is innocent and is clear of any government hands.
But just like how we tend to find ways to download movies for free, the Chinese people found ways to read Wikipedia and get underneath the ban.
From that moment on, the Chinese government installed a powerful firewall that is almost impenetrable for both information from outside to go to China and vice versa.
You can however, still find ways to get through China’s barrier but of course it will take some skill.
Particularly for me, I think everyone country has a bad moment or two – War, poverty, corruption and things like that.
But the transparency of a country to show that shows how honest they are and that they trust their people enough to help make the country a better place by enticing opinions on improving.
At one point, I think it’s just a choice of whether or not they want to take action based on those opinions or not. What do you think?
China’s Requirements for Wikipedia
Knowing China, they actually have requests for companies before banning them entirely.
Since they are worried about what their people think, the Chinese government requested Wikiepedia to change the facts based on their own telling from time to time so that they can control the amount of information their people get.
Although it is a noble thing to do so that the Chinese people will always be positive thinking of their government, it can also be a double-edged blade because that will also give the government the power to hide things.
For example, if they did genocide and decided to kill 10,000 people, they can easily reduce the impact by not making it appear in Wikipedia.
Knowing that, the co-founder of Wikipedia Jimmy Wales replied by saying “I would rather have no Wikipedia in China then comply with any form of censorship”.
Way to go Jimmy!
Wikipedia is a human right and it has never taken any government requests to change or restrict information because it believes that information in human right.
What I like most about Wikipedia is that the information is credible and reliable not to mention unbiased which means they are on nobody’s side when it comes to war so before you start blaming anybody, I would suggest looking up to Wikipedia beforehand.
Wikipedia is a great source of true information and has stood still despite various threats from the government so if you’re in doubt when looking for info, you know that you can always trust Wikipedia for Intel.
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If you have any personal experience regarding China’s ban on Wikipedia, please do share below and I would be more than happy to reply.
I am Chinese. I am a little angry that our government decided to block Wikipedia. Maybe the main reason is some description are controversial. Such as political statue of Taiwan. Western countries regard Taiwan as a country, but Chinese government claims Taiwan is only a province.
But the most important reason is Wikipedia isn’t under Chinese government supervision. Government didn’t want to let its citizens to watch these “illegal information”.
So there’s problem.
Information can flow freely Zhou, but when a higher power wants to control what information goes in and out, that’s when everything changes.
I suggest to get a world citizen right away .
I agree of what you said, it can make you a little angry and i have use this website untill it is blocked by the goverment. If you want to use wikipedia, use a vpn to acces the website you want that will make you less angry at the goverment.
Try acessing the website with a VPN and this advice will help you alot.
I am not chinese but i live in china for quite a long time.
VPN’s one way to escape that wretched firewall !
Wikipedia embodies a wealth of information and I don’t know how people can do without it, especially if they have had access to it in the past.
This post is an eye opener for those who take certain things for granted. Needless to say, information is power.
Right you are Ade! I’ve been using Wikipedia myself all my life and I do agree i don’t know where to go to if I find it suddenly banned. I do hope they fix this soon! Thanks for dropping by Ade, have a blessed day
I have stayed in China for quite some time now so I am fully aware of them blocking everything like Google, YouTube, Facebook and learning from your article, even Wikipedia?!
We use a VPN here to gain access on social media sites and yes we pay for it. As for my observation, they (Chinese people) really don’t use any of these, because they have their own social media sites now (youku, baidu, weixin).
As for Wikipedia, I wish we had these when I was studying for the access to information is so great that you could get answers to your assignments within one site (lucky kids today huh :-)).
Another great information learned again from your site. Thanks a lot!
May you have a blessed day!
Hey there Bernie,
China is a great country I personally love the people and their rich culture. I agree, they do block a lot of things over there but if they would open up their doors to the world, I believe they can advance even further. Thanks for dropping by!
I know a lot of things are blocked in Communist countries. It’s a shame that people don’t have free access to information, but it’s how the government wants it. Hopefully, China will see the error of its ways and this won’t spread to other countries.
IN communist countries, the government tend to control everything and I pity the people there. I have friends that whenever they go back to China, they are having a hard communicating with anyone outside their country, it makes me feel glad that we don’t have that restriction no matter how troubled our lives are. Thanks for dropping by, Carla!
Great article on Wikipedia and I never even knew it was blocked in China, so thanks for the knowledge 🙂
I find Wikipedia and awesome resource for information and if there’s anything I want to know about a particular topic or person, then Wikipedia is always my first port of call.
I’ve just socially shared your post with my friends.
Thank you Neil! I agree Wikipedia is credible when it comes to finding information about something, I personally use it alot too. Thanks for sharing, I really appreciate that, have a great day!