Tuesday, October 15, 2013

The State of the Internet

Hi. I haven't posted in over a month, despite promising guest posts and all sorts of things. Why?

Well. As you know, China blocks Blogger. It also blocks Wordpress, YouTube, Facebook and an assortment of other unpredictable websites. I can, for example, get the New York Times and NPR, but not always other news websites that might not like China. Somedays I can get to my gmail, and other days I can't. I CAN usually get e-mail from my phone, but I cannot always respond.

I get around these rules with a VPN, or Virtual Private Network. Essentially, I tell the Chinese Internet that I'm somewhere else and I get to surf the internet as I please as if I were in the U.S., or Australia, or France. That is, until my VPN stopped working.

When that happens, you have no recourse because you need a VPN to find a new one. So, I was unable to update, or check Facebook, or do anything else that Americans often find so essential to their lives.

In some ways it was freeing. I couldn't obsessively check Facebook, for example, and I had to be very intentional about the e-mails I sent to friends and family because it would often take 30 minutes to send one. To complicate matters, I also didn't have internet in my new apartment (more on that later) and so I relied on Starbucks internet and my cell phone. I had to be very particular about Skyping (no internet!) and keeping in touch with family.

I just visited the States and I was able to fix most of the problem. So, you can {hopefully} expect a bunch of new posts, an update {or two!} on the Bucket List and generally seeing me around a lot more.

But keep in mind, that once I get back into China, all good intentions are at the mercy of the Great Firewall.

It's good to be back.

1 comment:

  1. Holy cow! I'm so tardy for the party...you live in China now?! (no more blogging sabbaticals this girl) You truly inspire me! I cant wait to see what you've crossed off the list.