China blocks access to iTunes because of pro-Tibet album

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The Great Firewall of China strikes again! Chinese authorities have blocked access to iTunes because several Olympic athletes downloaded a pro-Tibet album. As an ignorant American, how China handles its business re: Tibet isn’t any of my concern, but blocking iTunes while the Olympics are still ongoing seems unsophisticated to me. Why play into the perception that you’re a dissident-crushing monster when the world’s media is crawling all over your capital? ::shoulder shrug::

The block was first noticed as Chinese folks began to flood Apple support forums saying they couldn’t access iTunes. It turns out that the album Songs for Tibet, by the band (of sorts, it’s mainly a compilation thing) The Art of Peace Foundation, didn’t please Chinese authorities, especially since Olympic athletes were offered it for free as a “subtle form of protest.” Not subtle enough!

My favorite part of the story is how a Chinese Web site, china.org.cn, reported popular reaction to the album, saying that Chinese folks were “incensed” and that people were “rallying together to denounce Apple.”

Also, those Chinese gymnasts were totally underage. Let’s be mad, together! At everyone!

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