Various news outlets are reporting that Chinese police are investigating an incident in which an egg and shoes were thrown at Fang Binxing, the computer scientist credited with creating The Great Firewall of China. While we in the U.S. enjoy nearly unfettered access to the web, Chinese denizens are often blocked from information deemed unsavory or dangerous by authorities.
The attack occurred on May 19th, during a lecture Binxing was giving at Wuhan University. Evidence of the attack comes from Twitter user “Hanunyi,” who posted a picture of an egg in a hand and a tweet saying that egg and one of the two thrown shoes missed. The user, said to be a student, is attributed with hurling the egg and shoes.
Obviously, one angry man does is not a fair indicator of how one the most populous nation on the planet feels about Internet censorship, but other reports seem to indicate that some Chinese bloggers are very supportive of Hanunyi. For his protest, Hanunyi has apparently been offered cash and other gifts. Though surely one shoe is not going to end censorship in China, it will be interesting to see how this plays out and if it will inspire others as shoe-throwing activism has in the past.
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