Google Accuses Chinese Gov't. Of Blocking Gmail

Published by: Kelly Curtis on 21st Mar 2011 | View all blogs by Kelly Curtis
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Google Accuses Chinese Gov't. Of Blocking Gmail

Google Inc on Monday accused the Chinese government of interfering with its Gmail email service as part of an Internet crackdown following the escalation of political unrest in the Middle East, making it difficult for Gmail users to log in to the service.  Google's engineers, the company said, have not been able to discover any technical issues that would explain the issues or its main website.

“There is no technical issue on our side; we have checked extensively. This is a government blockage carefully designed to look like the problem is with Gmail,” the company explained in a prepared statement.  China is know for having some of the world's strictest Web controls and for blocking many popular social media sites like YouTube, Facebook and Twitter.  The controls have gotten even tighter, insiders say, since pro-democracy protests were launched across the Middle east in January.

Around the same time, a number of anonymous calls were made for protesters to launch a “Jasmine Revolution” in China, prompting authorities in the communist nation to increase Web censorship and deploy police to planned protest sites, though no protests have been reported.  A spokesperson for Google says that Gmail users in China have reported problems with the service since January.  Among the problems reported are an inability to log into the service, difficulty sending emails, and issues with the instant messaging service.

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