China Blocks Social Coding Site Github


Sad Octocat is sad…

Chinese developers are waking up to a little bad news this morning, as it looks like social coding platform Github has been blocked in China, according to the folks over on GigaOm. The article cites a Hacker News thread, where one commenter posits that this could be because of the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology’s recent order to stop using train ticket plugins, one of which references a javascript file from Github.

On the bright side, anyone who is technically capable of using Github is probably smart enough to circumvent China’s Great Firewall with relative ease. This poses more of an inconvenience than anything else. Many people are using Github’s Pages (a feature which launched back in April) to host static blogs these days 1, but I don’t think this functionality was what the net nanny was targeting. Nevertheless, I expect more than a few Chinese developers are probably finding their blogs blocked today as a result.

A Github spokesperson told The Next Web that they are in the process of investigating, but that they are “at least being partly blocked” by China’s Great Firewall. Github has over three million users in total, and we’ve inquired to find out how many of those are located in China. Update: A representative tells us that while they don’t have any regional breakdown of users, that China is the fourth highest visiting country to Github, and Beijing is the sixth ranked city. That’s more than I expected.

On a somewhat related note, another online code repository service, SourceForge, has been blocked in the past as well. But apparently the many instances when it was blocked were never permanent, so hopefully the Github’s block won’t be permanent either.

(See also: Here’s a list of websites blocked in China)

  1. See Jekyll, Pelican, and Octopress for prominent examples.
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