China’s quiet experiment to let millions roam the ‘real’ internet

China has long ruled cyber-space with an iron first. Most ubiquitous Western social media platforms have been banned, in full, ensuring that Chinese citizens are protected from the scurrilous diatribe of pesky westrn commentators.

Aside from this being a generally accepted circumstance, it has ensured that China has developed domestic social media and related technology platforms which far exceed in quality and integration of their ‘western peers’.

The efforts of the Great FireWall operators now have an intriguing new angle.

In a quiet experiment of just two weeks, China provided millions of people access to long-forbidden foreign websites such as YouTube and Instagram.

The trial appears to signal the communist government is moving towards giving the country’s citizens greater access to the global internet, while still attempting to control who sees what.

China now has a tool that lets users access YouTube, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Google  and other internet services that have otherwise long been banned in the country — selectively.

Called Tuber, the mobile browser debuted on China’s third-party Android stores this week, with an iOS launch in the pipeline. The landing page of the app features a scrolling feed of YouTube videos, with tabs at the bottom that allow users to visit other mainstream Western internet services.

Read more via Techcrunch here.


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