PUBLISHED : Monday, 11 February, 2013, 9:32pm
UPDATED : Tuesday, 12 February, 2013, 9:14am

'Go to hell!': Father of the Great Fire Wall receives special New Year greetings


Chris Luo is a Beijing native. He lived in Indiana, U.S. for four years before moving to Hong Kong to study journalism at Hong Kong Baptist University. He joined SCMP in 2012 as a website producer.

On Friday, the first day of the Chinese New Year, University principal Fang Binxing posted a greeting on weibo saying, “All the best to you in the year of the snake” and a poem praising his university. However, the feedback has not been very positive.

The post has been retweeted over 24,000 times, with the most common comments being the Chinese word “gun” or “go to hell” in English.

Fang is the principal of the University of Posts and Telecommunications in Beijing. But he is better known as the “father of GFW” among Chinese netizens. He earned this title by developing the Great Firewall of China, a nickname netizens came up with to describe the sophisticated system designed to block domestic internet users from accessing websites that the government has prohibited.

Popular websites such as Facebook, YouTube, and Twitter are among the censored sites.

The system is viewed by many around the world as a notorious tool that infringes Chinese citizens’ rights of accessing information. It is also used by the Chinese government to maintain social stability and consolidate control.

Under Fang’s post, one comment read, “Your name will be marked in history.”

Another wrote, “I wonder why he continues to post knowing the response he will get.”


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