This article changed my view about the firewall. A quote:
when chat rooms are closely monitored, people start talking about "cabbages" when they mean "democracy." As one blogger wrote recently, "No democratic movement in the history of mankind has ever stalled just because the word 'democracy' could not be uttered." But these arguments ignore a fundamental principle in legal theory: A law does not need to be perfect to be effective. If you're talking about carrots and cabbages instead of multiparty elections, the Communist Party has already won. Ordinary Chinese won't have any idea of what you're talking about. Competing discussion threads that rant against the Japanese, on the other hand, will continue to enjoy mass appeal.
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