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  • ChinaExpats.com 6:55 am on December 30, 2014 Permalink  

    Gmail Blocked In China, So Now A Good VPN Is Necessary 

    Firewall-iconOne of the most important tools in the arsenal for any expat living in China (and any traveler to China, and also any Chinese person living in China) is a VPN. A VPN service provides a “tunnel” that encrypts your traffic and allows you access to the global Internet.

    It is still amazing that so many expats do not rely on a good VPN. Without a VPN, any business emails, or websites you visit while in China, will be tracked by the government. But with a VPN, you avoid all those issues. And with a VPN, you also gain access to Youtube, Twitter, Facebook, BBC, NYTimes, Bloomberg, and all of Google’s services. Why would any person in China not want to use a VPN? All the new outlets are today reporting that Gmail is again blocked. See these articles here:


    So we have seen lots of VPN services come and go. Many lack details on their website about their physical location, which makes them VERY VERY dubious. And others don’t “know China” so well, so they often get blocked inside China.


    The best VPN provider we at ChinaExpats.com have found is from the company in Hong Kong called Kovurt. Kovurt’s VPN works so well in China, and they have lots of experience making it work in China. We like them so much here, we’ve been a member of their affiliate program for a year, so that is why you see some banners on our site. Other companies had affiliate programs, but Kovurt’s service are always so good, so until they fail us we will continue promoting them. And we like the branding angle of “Become a Kovurt Agent”.

    Also, want to know more about how to use a VPN? Use VPNInstructions.com for details on Android, iPhone, Mac, and Windows.

    Read the original article: ChinaExpats.com – China Expats

  • ChinaExpats.com 12:43 pm on December 27, 2014 Permalink  

    American Journalist Travels To China To Report Chinese People Stare At Foreigners 

    cat staringEvery expatriate coming to China understands the frustrations of living, working, and traveling in China. There are the constant worries of food safety, the horrible pollution, and the “stares”. Whether you are black, white, or brown, you have all seen the “stares”.

    The stares are the interesting looks many Chinese — usually from the countryside — bestow upon foreigners. On a bus, train, sidewalk, or restaurant, many Chinese will stare at foreigners. The stares are almost never negative in flavor, but rather just innocent looks at people whom the Chinese have rarely seen in-person.

    But unfortunately, many foreigners to China bring their own presumptions and biases to China and expect Chinese people to have the same ideas and thoughts and experiences as the foreigners (what hegemonic hogwash!). So those stares are like glances into the souls of foreigners:
    “Why is that Chinese person looking at me?”
    “That Chinese person is looking at me because I am a foreigner!”
    “That Chinese person is threatening me with her stares.”
    “They are all looking at me. They are all talking about me. They are all interested in me.”
    “The Chinese person is looking at me because I am from India and they don’t like Indians.”
    “That Chinese person is staring at me because I am black, and they don’t like blacks.”

    Dahleen Glanton

    Dahleen Glanton

    In almost all cases, the stares are innocent. In fact, staring is a national pastime in China. Chinese people stare at other Chinese people. Often uneducated and rural Chinese will do the most staring, but staring happens in the big cities too.

    So this article this week (“Traveling while black created a stir in China”) by Chicago Tribune reporter Dahleen Glanton has caused a stir among expats on ChinaExpats.com. The users on the site of all races, colors, and creeds, seem to have the same takeaway on the article: Glanton brought her own biases and incorrect interpretations to the experiences she had.

    Glanton is black, so she assumes that being “African-American” (i.e. we assume from her picture that she means this to be “black”, as there are lots of brown and white people who are also African) is the reason she receives the stares.

    The worst part of her hegemonic article is the last line, “We decided not to burst his bubble. He’ll figure out the truth soon enough.” What does she insinuate? Does she mean that her nephew was incorrect and instead all the people wanted to take a picture with him because they look down on black people, or thought him ugly, or thought him a novelty? Most likely it was because of the latter, and nothing more.

    China is a very racist and bigoted place to live and travel. On State-controlled TV there are news reports and shows that promote bigotry against even other Asians. There is even bias among people within China — both towards ethnic Chinese minorities and towards other Chinese living in different cities and regions. But bringing the American experience to China and overlaying that narrative on top of a China trip is a bad cultural attitude and most likely was not the reality that Glanton assumed she was experiencing.

    Read the original article: ChinaExpats.com – China Expats

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