China's net censors close two more popular blogs (not): protest prank


Massage cream" and "Milkpig," two blogs run by journalists in China, were shut down last week by service provider yculblog, according to a statement issued by advocacy group Reporters Without Borders (RSF).

Reader comment: jason says,

You missed the entire point about the prank: The blogs were not shut down, they intentionally shut themselves down for a day as an April Fools-esque joke! Link 1, Link 2, Link 3.

Massage cream is run by Beijing journalist, Wang Xiaofeng, who comments on the news in a sophisticated style making use of metaphor. In an article posted on his blog and translated into English on EastSouthWestNorth, he said, "There is a principle in my blog that my posts must be different from what is published in the printed media. I wanted to write those words that the editors were not used to, or else I would lose interest in writing."

The blog was the winner in the "best journalistic blog in China" category in the competition held in 2005 by the German media Deutsche Welle.

Milkpig is a blog run by a journalist in Guangzhou (South). He does not usually deal with sensitive issue. Internet-users trying to access Milkpig or Massage Cream see the message, "For unavoidable reasons known to all, this blog is now temporarily closed". The RSS flow for these two blogs however remain active so it is possible to access their content despite the censorship: - -

According to the website Danwei, a third blog, "the inflamed prostate" was reportedly closed at the same time for having covered events at the Beijing news - referring to the outcry caused, in December 2005, by the sacking of two executives at a Beijing daily.

In November 2005, a blog run by political dissident, Wang Yi, was closed on the order of the authorities. One month later, Microsoft agreed to close the blog of Chinese journalist, Zhao Jing, even though it was hosted in the United States.