My first Internet censorship experience as a user was back in my teens in Indonesia. My main entertainment was Japanese anime and manga. Everything was fine until they implement Internet censorship. It started when porn became viral on the news from as light as teenagers skipping school going to Internet cafe to watch port to as heavy as teenager rapes because they were inspired by porns. With most of society against even the smallest indecent acts pushed the congress to pass anti pornography law. It had nothing to do with for many months, but then one day, the anime and manga site which was my main source of entertainment was blocked until today. Then, when I was searching for certain technical details, I found out that Reddit was blocked and it frustrated me because the information I needed was there. The authorities probably block animes and mangas because they have obscene scenes even just a little like show panties and revealing clothes. They blocked Reddit probably because there was the not safe for work (NSFW) part, instead of trying to block that part only, they just blocked the whole Reddit and until today they have no intention of finding ways to block the NSFW only. This went too far which forced me to find ways to bypass their censorships.
As time passes I learned of other countries that implements censorship such as China’s great firewall and worst of them all is North Korea. I hate the idea because the ending is to control the people. Therefore, I became an advocate for total censorship resistance.
During the writing of this article, I was studying in Japan. I didn’t find any censorship here and my apartment provided me with free dynamic IP address where I could link with dynamic domain name service (DDNS). So, I placed a Squid Proxy, OpenVPN, and TOR server before I took a vacation to my home country Indonesia. Below, I recorded videos of my successful attempt in bypassing Internet censorship from my house in Indonesia through my apartment’s server in Japan:
Questions and Answers
- Is bypassing censorship equals to trespassing? I don’t believe so because trespassing means breaching to somewhere private. The Internet is a public network just like the streets and the open world where it is always fully open. Internet censorship is similar to user quarantine.
- What about the taking down of websites, account terminations, etc? That’s also censorship but from the publisher point of view which is more to the freedom of press or speech which I will write a separate article. This article focuses on censorship from the audience point of view which is more to freedom choice and information.
- Do I agree with censorship even if they are about porns, drugs, and other criminal activities? Frankly I don’t. Although there is a popular saying that preventive measure is more affective than curing, there are two main problems with current implementation:
- The first one is that they strictly implement censorship without education or worse suppress information which dangerously keeps people ignorant and stupid like they try to regulate the free market and suppress information about money. When financial crisis occurs, how many ignorant people got destroyed? If they simply learned about money, they would have survived.
- The second reason is because the authorities are the ones enforcing the censorship which will lead to a dangerous end result of the authorities becoming too powerful. History shows that they will try to control more and more if we let them be which one day will be too late and we will be enslaved. If that happens, either we will be doomed or history repeats itself where a revolution will happen again successfully.