Are you feeling that sweet Olympic spirit yet?
The Chinese authorities confirmed today that the 20,000 foreign journalists covering the Olympic Games will not have unrestricted access to the Internet during their stay. Kevin Gosper, the head of the IOC’s press commission, admitted today: “I also now understand that some IOC officials negotiated with the Chinese that some sensitive sites would be blocked on the basis they were not considered games related.”
Yesterday Gosper said the IOC’s key concern was to “ensure that the media are able to report on the games as they did in previous games.”
Reporters Without Borders condemns the International Olympic Committee’s acceptance of the fact the Chinese authorities are blocking access to certain websites at the Olympic Games media centre in Beijing. More than 20,000 foreign journalists are affected.
The organization also condemns the cynicism of the Chinese authorities, who have yet again lied, and the IOC’s inability to prevent this situation because of its refusal to speak out for several years.
Anybody who trusted a secretive authoritarianism regime (including the IOC) to keep their promises on this key issue was deluding themselves.
Let the Games begin.