Wikipedia Co-Founder Jimmy Wales said he would rather have no Wikipedia in China than comply with any form of censorship.
In an interview with The Wall Street Journal in Hong Kong, Mr. Wales said the company will always refuse to comply with government requests to restrict information, calling access to knowledge and education a human right.
Since early June, in the lead-up to the anniversary of the Tiananmen Square crackdown, China €™s Great Firewall has blocked the encrypted version of Wikipedia where users in China could access the site without filters. Now, users can now only access the unencrypted version of the site, where articles on politically sensitive topics are blocked and keyword filtering is common.
Web activists have since called on Wikipedia to default to the encrypted version of their site, where outside sources cannot filter or track user behavior on the site. The move, they say, would force the government to decide between blocking Wikipedia outright and allowing access to the unfiltered version of the site.
Mr. Wales said he liked the idea, but said the company does not yet have the technical ability to do that right now in China, and that the company would not shut down the unencrypted version of the site. He is also not particularly concerned about the threat of cyber attacks, since the company does not engage in malicious activities or carry financial data.
In December, China €™s legislature decided to require Internet access providers to collect data about users that links their online names to their real identities.
Asked whether he would comply with a real-name registration system, Mr. Wales replied €œnot for five seconds. €