“I will not get out,” Huang Zhisong said in a radio interview last week regarding China’s recent decision to keep him from traveling outside of the country until 2016. The editor of the Chinese version of the free online encyclopedia was given no explanation for his grounding except that he “should know the reason.”

The blockade occurred soon after Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales spoke out against Chinese censorship laws. The Daily Dot elaborates on the circumstances surrounding Zhisong’s comment to Radio Free Asia:

The interview comes days after Wales stated in the Hong Kong Wall Street Journal that Wikipedia has been exploring the option of removing the free, but censored, version of Wikipedia in China. This would presumably force Chinese officials into a choice: endure a completely Wikipedia-less nation, or unblock the secure version of the website, which is hosted on non-Chinese servers that do not have to comply with Chinese censorship laws.

Of course, ideally to Wales, the Chinese government would stop censoring individual pages on Chinese Wikipedia. In the interview with Hong Kong Wall Street Journal, he called access to knowledge and education a human right.

Although it’s unclear whether Wales’ remarks are truly the impetus behind China’s punishment of Zhisong, the editor believes it is his country’s way of telling Wikipedia to toe the line when it comes to its censorship decrees.

—Posted by Natasha Hakimi

Your support matters…

Independent journalism is under threat and overshadowed by heavily funded mainstream media.

You can help level the playing field. Become a member.

Your tax-deductible contribution keeps us digging beneath the headlines to give you thought-provoking, investigative reporting and analysis that unearths what's really happening- without compromise.

Give today to support our courageous, independent journalists.