Staff WriterSince Beijing blocked social networking sites, Facebook and Twitter, back in 2009 after authorities credited the increase of riots in the restless western province of Xinjiang to the networking sites. Following the wake of the ban, The New York Times, was the next site to have been blocked since its reports last year that the family of former Premier Wen Jiabao had accumulated a huge fortune. There have since been reports recently that this blockage will be lifted. In recent news it was reported that China would apparently be lifting its ban on social networking sites Twitter and Facebook. Jinxia, director of the research and innovation centre of the Qianhai Authority recently released a statement saying "In Qianhai, we will be able to see what they can see in Hong Kong, we will strive for an exclusive international communication channel in which information won't be filtered," he also added that Facebook and Twitter would now be available with this non-filtering. Although this seemed like a step in a positive direction for the people of the communist country, it turned out to be a false report. A countering statement was released to the People's Daily, the official voice of China's ruling Communist Party, denying the allegations saying "Today (our) journalists obtained the information from a very powerful channel that these reports are wrong," and authorities insist that no changes will be made to China's Great Firewall, which was implemented to routinely delete online postings and blocking access to websites it found politically sensitive or unsuitable such as social networking sites. Yet no matter of the evasions the party has towards social networking, the communist party apparently enjoys the business opportunities and aspects that is offered by the Internet, but is careful of the voice it offers in turn to rebels and traitors who question and speak out against their system. Due to the free trade zone in Shanghai's Pudong financial district, the central government seems willing and prepared to release some of its hold on the reigns to help promote and to sell the city as a financial capital to rival against the greats in the world. The paper however assured readers that authorities will continue to strive to remain watchful to the use of the Internet to promote prostitution, drugs and other illicit activities on the World Wide Web and that the new freethinking approach would not affect the principles of the country. The Securities Times reported earlier this month that Shanghai's free trade zone will be launched on Sept. 29.
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