Web

China Says Internet Freedom Accusations Threaten Ties

china-flag

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton gave a major policy speech at Washington DCs Newseum yesterday, outlining the United State’s policy position towards Internet freedom and pulling few punches in criticizing states and regimes that exercise censorship and control over Internet access and content within their borders, characterizing those nations as attempted to construct an “Information Curtain” that harks back to the Cold War’s Iron Curtain. Clinton specifically called out Internet censorship operations in Tunisian, Uzbekistan, Vietnam, Egypt, Iran, Saudi Arabia, and—of course—China, which runs the world’s most comprehensive Internet censorship operation.

Clinton noted that “technology does not take sides,” repeatedly characterized Internet freedoms in Cold War terms, and stated flatly that the United States is deeply committed to fighting for free speech, freedom of religion, and freedom to assemble online, and that the United States would support technologies that enable those goals—including technology intended to help people bypass government-mandated Internet censorship.

Clinton’s policy speech is, of course, in the context of Google and other companies being targeted by cyberattacks in China, seemingly with the intent of accessing information about Chinese human rights activists. In an unusually outraged move, Google says it wants to stop censoring search results on its Chinese search engine, and has even threatened to withdraw from the Chinese market.

Although China itself has had comparatively little to say about the Google situation—basically asserting that companies doing business in China must obey Chinese laws—the Chinese Foreign Ministry wasted little time responding to Clinton’s Internet freedoms policy speech, saying Clinton’s stance damages relations between China and the West. Chinese foreign ministry spokesperson Ma Zhaoxu characterized China’s Internet as “open,” and asserted that the United States government was using cries for Internet freedoms as a cover to level “baseless accusations” against the Chinese government. Opinion makers in Chinese media—which, of course, is heavily monitored and controlled by government authorities—polemicize the issue even more, characterizing Western nations’ calls for Internet freedoms as little more than cultural imperialism.

Regardless of how the current situation with Google in China resolves, Clinton’s policy speech for the first time put online and Internet freedoms into play as a component of the United States’ broader foreign policy platform.

Gaming

The Division 2 offers nothing but a funhouse mirror of America

Tom Clancy's The Division 2 improves on the design shortcomings of the original game in several different ways, but its version of Washington D.C. is completely removed from reality.
Smart Home

Need some help? Here's our handy step-by-step guide on how to Airbnb your home

Getting ready to make your home a great rental? Here's how to Airbnb your home with the right amenities, insurance, supplies, and everthing else that you need. Use this guide to get started without making beginner mistakes!
Mobile

5G's arrival is transforming tech. Here's everything you need to know to keep up

It has been years in the making, but 5G is finally becoming a reality. While 5G coverage is still extremely limited, expect to see it expand in 2019. Not sure what 5G even is? Here's everything you need to know.
Movies & TV

'Prime'-time TV: Here are the best shows on Amazon Prime right now

There's more to Amazon Prime than free two-day shipping, including access to a number of phenomenal shows at no extra cost. To make the sifting easier, here are our favorite shows currently streaming on Amazon Prime.
Computing

Firefox 66 is here and it will soon block irritating autoplay videos

Do web advertisements have you frustrated? Mozilla is here to help. The latest version of the browser will soon block autoplaying videos by default and will also help make web page scrolling smoother.
Movies & TV

No TV? No problem. Here's how to watch the Final Four online

Whether you want to watch the Big Dance on your phone or on your smart TV, we have the lowdown on all the ways to watch March Madness you can handle. Grab your foam finger and some nachos.
Business

Patreon is having another go at changing the way it charges creators

Patreon messed up pretty badly the last time it tried to change its payment system. Now it's having another go, though this time the changes mainly affect future sign-ups rather than its current community of creators.
Computing

Pinning websites to your taskbar is as easy as following these quick steps

Would you like to know how to pin a website to the taskbar in Windows 10 in order to use browser links like apps? Whichever browser you're using, it's easier than you might think. Here's how to get it done.
Web

Switch up your Reddit routine with these interesting, inspiring, and zany subs

So you've just joined the wonderful world of Reddit and want to explore it. But with so many subreddits to choose from, exploring them can be overwhelming. Here are some of the best subreddits to get you started.
Computing

Confused about RSS? Don't be. Here's what it is and how to use it

What is an RSS feed, anyway? This traditional method of following online news is still plenty useful. Let's take a look at what RSS means, and what advantages it has in today's busy world.
Computing

Don’t be fooled! Study exposes most popular phishing email subject lines

Phishing emails are on the rise and a new study out by the cybersecurity company Barracuda has exposed some of the most common phishing email subject lines used to exploit businesses. 
Web

How much!? British Airways glitch results in $4.2M quote for family vacation

Website errors sometimes cause flight prices to display at way below the correct price. But British Airways recently experienced the opposite issue when it tried to charge a family more than $4 million for a vacation in Mexico.
Computing

Want to save a webpage as a PDF? Just follow these steps

Need to quickly save and share a webpage? The best way is to learn how to save a webpage as a PDF file, as they're fully featured and can handle images and text with ease. Here's how.
Computing

Delete tracking cookies from your system by following these quick steps

Cookies are useful when it comes to saving your login credentials and other data, but they can also be used by advertisers to track your browsing habits across multiple sites. Here's how to clear cookies in the major browsers.