Torn about Tor

Steve smorrey at
Tue Sep 13 18:00:50 MDT 2005

Ross Werner wrote:

> On Tue, 13 Sep 2005, Jonathan Ellis wrote:
>> Yes.  The Chinese are very serious about what they do, and they have the
>> budget to enforce it.  Nor is there some magical property of Chinese
>> water that prevents clueful network admins from working there.
> I'd also like to point out that it's not even a matter of blocking 
> people from using it--all you have to do is *detect* that people are 
> using it, at which point you can happily throw them in prison or 
> whatever. Simple detection is a lot harder to avoid.
>     ~ Ross
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I have to agree detection is much easier than blocking in an instance 
such as this.  And I'm not trying to proselytize Tor as an end all be 
all solution.
Right now it works, and when a few people get thrown in jail for using 
it, someone will craft some other system that will successfully avoid 
It's human nature, we don't take too well to being in a cage without 
having committed a real societal ill, whether the cage is real or 
virtual, and limiting access to information, because your government 
deems it seditous, only serves to make the information that much more 
Think about all those running Mac OSX86 on thier Dells, It's just the 
forbidden fruit syndrome.

As to the previous posters comment about magical water.  There is also 
nothing in the water that prevents non-clueful or even clueful but 
permissive admins from working there either.  In fact I would hazard a 
guess that since this IS China we are talking about, that alot of admins 
may be VERY clueful and allow the running of these things as a way of 
permitting thier oppressed users to access resources, they may otherwise 
not have access to.
All the while being able to disavow knowledge of what user accessed the 
system, nor where they went.

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