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China closes internet cafes

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Wednesday, 21 November, 2001, 12:24 GMT

China cracks down on cybercafes

Parents are complaining that their children are hooked

By Duncan Hewitt in Shanghai

The Chinese authorities say they have closed more than 17,000 internet cafes as part of a sustained campaign to tighten controls on the internet.

Another 28,000 have been ordered to install special monitoring software.

China and the internet

27 million users

Four million cybercafe users

Over 17,000 cafes shut down

28,000 to use monitoring software

Over 94,000 cafes checked since April

Shanghai's Wen Hui newspaper said the campaign had scored a preliminary success in cleaning up problems which it said included an excessive number of internet cafes, and sloppy management.

The latest figures from what may be the world's largest-ever internet clean-up show that Chinese police and commercial officials have checked more than 94,000 cafes since April.

According to Wen Hui, just over half had their licences renewed, but almost 17,500 were closed down.

Internet cafes are being banned near schools

The clean-up was ordered by China's cabinet, partly in response to complaints from parents that their children were becoming hooked on internet chat rooms, or on the computer games and pornographic websites which many internet cafes offered to attract customers.

The authorities also want to prevent access to political and dissident websites, and those belonging to some foreign media organisations.

And Wen Hui said all licensed internet cafes are now installing special security software which blocks access to such sites, and keeps a record of which web pages a user has visited.

Internet licence

Internet cafes, many consisting of just a few computers in a room, are used by over four million of China's estimated 27 million internet users.

Some youths will submerge themselves in internet bars for long periods, playing unhealthy games and adversely affecting their development as normal students

Wen Hui newspaper

But there have been frequent reports of teenagers staying out all night, or being robbed by people they have met in internet chat rooms.

Many cities have now banned internet cafes from areas near schools, and are limiting young people's access to them.

And in Shanghai, several thousand middle school students have received what is called an internet driving licence, after taking special training courses designed to protect them from the perils of the World Wide Web.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/hi/english/world/asia-pacific/newsid_1668000/1668335.stm

in other news, China banned Time Magazine, as well as any tv commercial featuring a foreigner

:blown:

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Some youths will submerge themselves in internet bars for long periods, playing unhealthy games and adversely affecting their development as normal students

:laugh: I'm sorry, but this just made me laugh :laugh:

You know, im not surprised though. China has been opening its doors a lot lately, most recently by allowing Yao Ming to play professional basketball here in America, entering the WTO, and allowing the usage of cell phones.

I bet that there will be some form of resistance, be it new "underground" internet cafe's opening up, or some other way to access the internet.

Those figures for the amount of internet cafe's that existed in China are too much to take this sitting.

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