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The splinternet starts here

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Earlier this week, the Nikkei Asian Review reported:

Taiwan is cracking down on video streaming services of Chinese tech giants Baidu and Tencent Holdings, citing national security and propaganda concerns ahead of a presidential election next year.

[The] deputy minister of Taiwan’s Mainland Affairs Council, told the Nikkei Asian Review on Thursday that Taiwan is likely to ban Baidu’s popular iQiyi platform, and block Tencent’s plan to bring its streaming service to the island later this year.

“We are concerned that streaming media services that have close ties with Beijing could have cultural and political influences in Taiwan…and even affect Taiwan’s elections.”

Is this the first time a democracy will try to block Chinese online media for purely political reasons?

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Jeremy Goldkorn

Jeremy Goldkorn worked in China for 20 years as an editor and entrepreneur. He is editor-in-chief of SupChina, and co-founder of the Sinica Podcast.