Reuters has joined Bloomberg, the New York Times and the Wall Street Journal in being blocked in China. Reuters itself reported that its website is not reachable in the country as of today.
The organization said it has suffered partial censorship in China in the past, but this time its English and Chinese sites are both affected. That’s verified by data from internet monitoring site Great Fire.
“Reuters is committed to practicing fair and accurate journalism worldwide. We recognize the great importance of news about China to all our customers, and we hope that our sites will be restored in China soon,” Reuters said in a statement.
The reason for the block is not clear. China’s internet censorship organ often blocks new sites and services without warning, but in cases of media it often follows controversial stories. That was the case for past restrictions imposed on The Guardian, New York Times and Bloomberg — each of which published political exposes prior to being blocked. However Reuters hasn’t recently put out stories that obviously raise red flags or cover sensitive topics.
In related news in China, Great Fire itself has been under fire from a strong DDoS attack over the past few days targeting sites that it mirrors in order to avoid censorship. The organization is being served 2.6 billion requests per hour, that’s hoicked the hosting fees up to $30,000 per day, prompting it to go public with a plea for help.
The perpetrator of the attack has not been identified, but the incident comes days after a Wall Street Journal story explained how Great Fire is using cloud storage systems to bypass China’s censorship regime. You can draw your own conclusions from that.