Hong Kong’s Apple Each day Newspaper Immortalized on the Blockchain

In short

  • Apple Each day is a pro-democracy information outlet in Hong Kong that started in 1995.
  • Attributable to a latest regulation, nevertheless, native authorities have frozen the publication’s funds, forcing it to shut down.

Apple Each day, the pro-democracy information outlet just lately shut down by the Hong Kong authorities, has turned to blockchain know-how to protect its content material. 

Activists supporting the newspaper are backing up outdated articles onto blockchain platforms the place censorship is close to not possible to realize. 

“I’m not doing this as a result of I really like Apple Each day, it’s what must be finished. I by no means thought that Apple Each day would disappear so rapidly,” mentioned Ho, a 21-year-old tech employee in dialog with Reuters

As of earlier in the present day, greater than 4,000 Apple Each day articles had been uploaded onto ARWeave—a “world, everlasting exhausting drive” constructed on blockchain know-how. 

One other blockchain resolution referred to as LikeCOin has been developed by a programmer named Kin Ko, which helps customers authenticate any content material on the platform. Ko instructed Reuters that “Historical past should not be decided by these in energy.” 

Hong Kong’s crackdown on Apple Each day

Apple Each day was compelled to close down on account of a nationwide safety regulation that allowed the federal government to freeze the outlet’s funds. 

“Regulation enforcement actions taken by Hong Kong regulation enforcement companies are based mostly on proof, strictly in keeping with the legal guidelines of Hong Kong, and for the acts of the individuals or entities involved,” a spokesperson for Hong Kong’s Safety Bureau reportedly mentioned. 

“Thanks to all readers, subscribers, advert shoppers, and Hong Kongers for 26 years of immense love and help,” Apple Each day read in a web based article. “Right here we are saying goodbye, care for yourselves.”

The shutdown imposed on Apple Each day has been thought-about a significant blow towards press freedom in Hong Kong. Taiwan’s Mainland Affairs Council launched a press release amidst the closure of the paper, saying it felt “excessive remorse,” and “solemnly condemned” the choice. 

Blockchain and censorship

This isn’t the primary time authorities censorship has been met with blockchain know-how. 

There have been all kinds of comparable responses to censorship world wide, together with the Uncensored Library, an archive of works from beforehand censored journalists that now lives on Minecraft. 

The library was designed by Reporters With out Borders in collaboration with London-based firm BlockWorks. “As soon as it’s been launched, it multiplies, and it’s due to this fact way more tough to take down,” James Delaney, founding father of BlockWorks, instructed Decrypt on the time. 

Different anti-censorship blockchain options have appeared alongside the Uncensored Library, together with the decentralized different to Wikipedia—Everipedia. 

These options have even taken to social media, with platforms like Mastodon and Voice offering alternate options to centralized social media giants like Fb and Twitter. 

“Mastodon isn’t a single web site like Twitter or Fb, it’s a community of 1000’s of communities operated by completely different organizations and people that present a seamless social media expertise,” Mastodon mentioned. 

Although these platforms have but to succeed in the identical important mass as their extra common counterparts, occasions like these in Hong Kong spotlight how essential their existence is.

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