Google, WhatsApp, Telegram, YouTube. These names are probably a given in your life. This, unfortunately, is not the case when it comes to China. And, for what it’s worth, Russia might follow suit. Let’s dive a little deeper into censorship.
Censorship in China
Have you ever heard of the Great Firewall of China? The government has a clear way of handling things when it comes to the Internet. They don’t want anything to do with the media or messaging platforms that westerners use. What’s more, they go to great lengths to make sure that the Chinese people can’t access them. If your go-to Social Network is Facebook, or Twitter, Chinese people don’t have many choices but to use WeChat. That is also true for messaging apps. Neither WhatsApp or Telegram work, making (again) WeChat the most popular service. You might start to understand where this is going.
The Chinese government wants to avoid any kind of propaganda that might go against them. So, they want to control any form of online interaction to stop make sure to catch any dissident. That’s why, if you have an Android phone, you won’t be able to access any of the Google services. No Play Music, no Play Games, not even a Play Store! Since censorship is something that the Chinese people have been struggling with for years, VPNs are starting to be very popular.
Censorship in Russia
As we mentioned in one of our recent articles, Russia is fighting very hard against VPNs. So it comes as a sad news the fact that the lower chamber of parliament has backed a bill that could potentially create their version of the Great Firewall of China. If this bill passed, all ISPs in Russia would have to route all the Internet traffic in a way that could give the government the chance to spy on their citizens. But how can the Russian people accept this bill?
The backers of the bill claim that it will give the Russian government the tools to defend their people from cyberattacks. Not only that, this could give the Russian government an excuse to proceed with their plan to cut off the Internet for research purposes. This didn’t sit well with a lot of people, leading to a series of protests and arrests. Despite the reassuring words of the Kremlin, the fear is that Russia will be completely cut off from the western world. According to Dmitry Peskov, these measures “are designed to ensure [the] Internet’s viability amid potential aggressive steps in cyberspace against our country”.
The importance of VPNs
VPNs are the best option when it comes to overcome censorship, circumventing geoblocking and being able to express oneself in countries where the freedom of speech is not granted. they guarantee online anonymity and a secure, encrypted connection. You may use them just to access the American Netflix, but for many it’s the highway to self-expression. And the only way to fight censorship.
If you live in Europe, you might have heard about Article 13. So, you might also be in need of a good VPN to continue taking part in the meme culture. To help you find the best VPN for your needs, we reviewed a bunch of them just to find the 10 best VPNs on the market!
Keep up with the latest privacy news on our blog!