I woke up this morning and my Internet was acting all funny. Chinese sites would load quick as could be, but anything outside of the PRC was as slow as Mao’s second coming.
Immediately my mind turned to the worst and I figured that they’d finally done it, they’d finally blocked all content that wasn’t being produced in China (read: everything of value). Resigning myself to my new Sinocentric media life, I decided to give the China Daily a read, something I usually avoid with strong measure.
I was interested to learn that Saddam will be getting a new, rather tight, tie for Christmas and that Taiwan suffered an earthquake. Hmm… natural disaster in (near) China… wait… goofy Internet… hold on… could it be… yes! I need more coffee! After a quick cup I asked Maggie to call China Telecom, where a sweet girl told her that the quake in Taiwan knocked out China’s on-ramp to the freeworld.
Apparently, and this is from the not-too-creditable “customer service” representative at CT, all of China’s access to the Internet at large runs through Taiwan… man was that some shitty planning – and a helluva chip the ROC can play should things get nasty between the two siblings.
PRC: “Um, we’d really like you to come back and be a part of your motherland.”
ROC: “But we believe in a multi-party system and don’t like to spit.”
PRC: “Fine, have it your way. We’re going to attack you tomorrow.”
ROC: “If you do, you’ll only be able to access Mainland-produced porn.”
PRC: “Please disregard, have a nice day.”
It seems that the quake was minor in relation to the damage that came about two years ago also in South East Asia, but man… that’s some timing. Mother Nature telling us she’s still watching less we forget to put our asses in gear and start sorting out our enviro problems.
As it was minor it’s unlikely that the numerous Taiwanese I work for and teach have relations that were affected, but I’m sure it will fill my classes for the next couple days with some interesting speculation and good conversations (well, ok, not in the little kid classes – though we have covered ‘typhoon’ in our vocabulary, tsunami and earthquake haven’t been addressed yet). Anyway, I’ve a minor amount of access at the moment and thought I’d see if I could post this. Here’s to hoping…