Apple investigating iTunes block in China

Posted:
in iPod + iTunes + AppleTV edited January 2014
Several users in China have been unable to access iTunes ever since a pro-Tibet album was released on the digital download service earlier this week, prompting an investigation by Apple.



According to the Associated Press, the Art of Peace Foundation announced on Sunday the release of "Songs for Tibet," a digital album comprised of music by popular artists such as Dave Matthews and Alanis Morissette, as well as a 15-minute speech by exiled Tibetan leader Dalai Lama.



One day later, iTunes users began complaining on the official iTunes support forum that they were unable to login and purchase music from the Apple download service. Instead, they were greeted with an error message that said: "iTunes could not connect to the iTunes store. An unknown error occurred.(-4) Make sure your network connection is active and try again."



Others have received a slight variation of that error message. "I am in Shanghai and have been able to use iTunes for 3 years now with no problems, but for the past two days I get an immediate message that the 'network connection was reset,'" wrote a forum poster by the name of jenjen2008.



Although Apple does not operate or support an iTunes Store in China, the company's iPod is widely popular in the region and local customers routinely log into the U.S. or other versions of the store to download media to the devices. While there have been periodic outages from time to time, users on the support forums report that those outages are often resolved quickly. This has lead some to speculate that China may be intentionally blocking iTunes.



Michael Wohl, executive director of the New York-based APF, agrees, telling the AP that he believes the album was the reason for the iTunes interruption, but could not prove it. "We issued a release saying that over 40 (Olympic) athletes downloaded the album in an act of solidarity, and that's what triggered it," he said. "Then everything got blocked."



Apple spokesperson Huang Yuna said the company was aware of the problem but had no comment on the matter for the time being. "We are still investigating," she said.



The AP notes that while Beijing encourages Internet use for education and business, it "tries to block access to foreign sites run by dissidents and human rights and Tibet activists."
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 55
    That's right up China's alley.



    Surprised they'd risk such open publicity during their precious Olympics, though...
  • Reply 2 of 55
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Xian Zhu Xuande View Post


    That's right up China's alley.



    Surprised they'd risk such open publicity during their precious Olympics, though...



    You mean as opposed to sending a squad of obviously under 16 female gymnasts to compete?
  • Reply 3 of 55
    teckstudteckstud Posts: 6,476member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by caliminius View Post


    You mean as opposed to sending a squad of obviously under 16 female gymnasts to compete?



    As if China is the first country to cheat at the Olympics?
  • Reply 4 of 55
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post


    Although Apple does not operate or support an iTunes Store in China, the company's iPod is widely popular in the region and local customers routinely log into the U.S. or other versions of the store to download media to the devices. While there have been periodic outages from time to time, users on the support forums report that those outages are often resolved quickly. This has lead some to speculate that China may be intentionally blocking iTunes.



    Wrong. There is a China iTunes store however it only has iPhone/ipod Touch applications. Apple doesn't have licenses for other content to be distributed in China.
  • Reply 5 of 55
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by teckstud View Post


    As if China is the first country to cheat at the Olympics?



    Well, that makes it alright then. Time for me to go assault somebody, other people do that, too.



    Ah, justifying everything by pointing to the misdeeds of others, such great fun. Time for me to go to Jamaica, they have such talented running coaches there...
  • Reply 6 of 55
    abster2coreabster2core Posts: 2,501member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by DonSqueak View Post


    Well, that makes it alright then. Time for me to go assault somebody, other people do that, too.



    Ah, justifying everything by pointing to the misdeeds of others, such great fun. Time for me to go to Jamaica, they have such talented running coaches there...



    I normally would not support anything that Teckstud says. However, as a Supreme Court Justice would say, if you open the door, you better be prepared to deal with whatever comes through it.
  • Reply 7 of 55
    successsuccess Posts: 1,039member
    With a name like Insane Bolt you'd be fast too
  • Reply 8 of 55
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Abster2core View Post


    I normally would not support anything that Teckstud says. However, as a Supreme Court Justice would say, if you open the door, you better be prepared to deal with whatever comes through it.



    And how lucky we are that what comes through is just 13 year old gymnasts in their long struggle against Human Rights.
  • Reply 9 of 55
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by teckstud View Post


    As if China is the first country to cheat at the Olympics?



    It is true that China is not alone as far as cheating goes. But to use this retort also insinuates that China is on level footing with these countries in other respects.



    This is not the case. We cannot seriously pretend that our CGI fireworks show (after all, smog is unsightly), lip-synching nine year-old (after all, the other child wasn't cute enough), and underage gymnasts are the most egregious of China's many offenses.
  • Reply 10 of 55
    teckstudteckstud Posts: 6,476member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by DonSqueak View Post


    Well, that makes it alright then. Time for me to go assault somebody, other people do that, too.



    Ah, justifying everything by pointing to the misdeeds of others, such great fun. Time for me to go to Jamaica, they have such talented running coaches there...



    I never said it makes it right.

    And being hypocritical of others while you're just as guilty is better? HA!

    YOu probably believe the Chinese invented lip syncing as well and condemn them for it.
  • Reply 11 of 55
    teckstudteckstud Posts: 6,476member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Animal Farm View Post


    It is true that China is not alone as far as cheating goes. But to use this retort also insinuates that China is on level footing with these countries in other respects.



    This is not the case. We cannot seriously pretend that our CGI fireworks show (after all, smog is unsightly), lip-synching nine year-old (after all, the other child wasn't cute enough), and underage gymnasts are the most egregious of China's many offenses.



    The opening ceremonies was entertainment - period.

    Hollywood invented lipsyncing.

    Go watch any Hollywood musical if it make yourself feel good.
  • Reply 12 of 55
    teckstudteckstud Posts: 6,476member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by DonSqueak View Post


    And how lucky we are that what comes through is just 13 year old gymnasts in their long struggle against Human Rights.



    It's reverse age discrimination to begin with- Nadia Comenici won Gold at 14 and nobody batted an eyelash.
  • Reply 13 of 55
    teckstudteckstud Posts: 6,476member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Animal Farm View Post


    It is true that China is not alone as far as cheating goes. But to use this retort also insinuates that China is on level footing with these countries in other respects.



    This is not the case. We cannot seriously pretend that our CGI fireworks show (after all, smog is unsightly), lip-synching nine year-old (after all, the other child wasn't cute enough), and underage gymnasts are the most egregious of China's many offenses.



    Why does any news reporting in the US about China have to include 3 words- always:

    1.) Smog

    2.) Human rights

    3.) Tibet



    It's so tired.
  • Reply 14 of 55
    Geez, techstud, give it a rest. Are you on the ChiComs' payroll?
  • Reply 15 of 55
    ivladivlad Posts: 740member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Animal Farm View Post


    It is true that China is not alone as far as cheating goes. But to use this retort also insinuates that China is on level footing with these countries in other respects.



    This is not the case. We cannot seriously pretend that our CGI fireworks show (after all, smog is unsightly), lip-synching nine year-old (after all, the other child wasn't cute enough), and underage gymnasts are the most egregious of China's many offenses.



    Like no one ever lip-sync at the US events like Super Ball. And like US never fake anything at all, perhaps documents stating that Iraq had missiles.



    I am not pro-China or anything, but this is how US Media attacks any country just to be noticed on the "right" level.
  • Reply 16 of 55
    teckstudteckstud Posts: 6,476member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by coffeetime View Post


    Geez, techstud, give it a rest. Are you on the ChiComs' payroll?



    NO- just Colombia's coffee. I'll stop.
  • Reply 17 of 55
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by teckstud View Post


    The opening ceremonies was entertainment - period.

    Hollywood invented lipsyncing.

    Go watch any Hollywood musical if it make yourself feel good.



    Did you even read what I wrote? I specifically said these WERE NOT the most egregious of China's offenses. You seem content to hit my point at an oblique angle. Thanks for the quip about Hollywood musicals, but I'm less interested in showmanship and more concerned about the way in which China consistently undermines human rights. These abuses -- arms dealership to the world's worst dictators and widespread environmental destruction among them -- are hardly trivial.
  • Reply 18 of 55
    teckstudteckstud Posts: 6,476member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Animal Farm View Post


    Did you even read what I wrote? I specifically said these WERE NOT the most egregious of China's offenses. You seem content to hit my point at an oblique angle. Thanks for the quip about Hollywood musicals, but I'm less interested in showmanship and more concerned about the way in which China consistently undermines human rights. These abuses -- arms dealership to the world's worst dictators and widespread environmental destruction among them -- are hardly trivial.



    blah, blah, blah - you forgot smog and Tibet. Whatever makes you feel good.

    You should have mentioned those serious abuses then- rather than hit on the trivial which you now state you're not interested in.
  • Reply 19 of 55
    teckstudteckstud Posts: 6,476member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by iVlad View Post


    Like no one ever lip-sync at the US events like Super Ball. And like US never fake anything at all, perhaps documents stating that Iraq had missiles.



    I am not pro-China or anything, but this is how US Media attacks any country just to be noticed on the "right" level.



    Right? Perhaps they should have had this instead of the little girl singing at the Olympics:



    http://www.funnyordie.com/videos/11ed201165
  • Reply 20 of 55
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by teckstud View Post


    blah, blah, blah - you forgot smog and Tibet. Whatever makes you feel good.

    You should have mentioned those serious abuses then- rather than hit on the trivial which you now state you're not interested in.



    Forgive me if I overestimated and assumed it wasn't necessary to begin from square one. You seem to have heard quite a bit of "smog" and "Tibet." My original argument was that, despite certain Olympic missteps, there were more pressing issues -- why restate a readily apparent case? To be met with "blah, blah, blah"? Makes me "feel good"? I now see my real mistake was attempting to begin a discussion with an intellectual charlatan. If you are unwilling to engage me on anything besides nitpicking and semantics, this will be my last post on the matter.



    My best.
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