I admire Google's (GOOG) bold stand against censorship in China. I imagine a lot of other people do too, because Google's stand comes at a significant cost to its business, as much as $600m a year.
And Google hasn't had much support from other US Internet companies over its China stand. Yahoo! was the only one that publicly supported Google's position.
How about a broader show of support for Google's anti-censorship stand? Suppose that for one day, web masters agreed to block all traffic to their web sites originating from China? It's very easy to do, the tools are there in your c-panel on your web server.
If the Chinese government were to object to the blocking, wouldn't that perfectly show that there is real value in an open Internet?
Let me know what you think. Maybe we can collectively create an Anti-Censorship Day and block traffic from all countries, not just China, that practice extreme forms of Internet censorship.
Reporters Without Borders - recently issued a report on Internet censorship and said there are 12 countries that it lists as "Enemies of the Internet" because of their censorship, these are: Saudi Arabia, Burma, China, North Korea, Cuba, Egypt, Iran, Uzbekistan, Syria, Tunisia, Turkmenistan, and Vietnam.
How about July 6?
I've also penned a draft open letter to the Chinese government. Please feel free to offer changes.
Dear Exalted Chinese Government Officials,
We love your culture, your people, and your history. You are the world's oldest civilization and the crowning glory to our common humanity.
We ask that you relax your Internet censorship rules and we seek to convince you that there is great value in communities that have open Internet access.
You should see what is written about the government here, in this country. There is enormous criticism of its imperialist policies around the world, and its domestic policies, especially its healthcare reform.
There's a massive amount of uncensored, anti-government content on our Internet, and in newspapers, TV, and on the radio. And yet there are no political demonstrations.
All that open criticism of the US government and we don't have a Tank man. Repressing ideas encourages aberrant behaviors.
Please don't be afraid of ideas. The Internet carries lots of ideas, there are so many it's as if they are a large school of fish -- your critics will be distracted by so many fish.
Let us be your little brother, we are unencumbered with the same heavy responsibilities of tradition and history, and we have been able to experiment with the Internet and other ideas. Let us help our big brother navigate through the rocky waters and into the bright future we hold in common -- an open Internet.
Thank you for your attention.