US-born skier Eileen Gu, who not long ago won her initial gold medal while competing for China, defended China’s draconian world-wide-web constraints by arguing that it’s easy for citizens to dodge the so-named “Great Firewall”.
Her comments came after an Instagram consumer took the 18-12 months-old skier to activity on Tuesday, asking Gu why she will get “special treatment” and is permitted to use Instagram when “millions of Chinese people from [the] mainland are not able to.”
“That’s not reasonable, can you converse up for people millions of Chinese who never have world wide web freedom,” the commenter extra.
In a flippant reaction accompanied by a thumbs-up emoji, Gu wrote, “Anyone can download a vpn its basically totally free on the App Shop.”
But Gu — who has stirred controversy by picking out to compete for her mother’s indigenous nation even with becoming elevated in California — unsuccessful to point out that VPNs are illegal for most individuals in China.
People without the need of governing administration authorization to use the equipment — which allow world wide web consumers dodge governing administration censorship by letting them seem like they’re browsing from another country — can be fined or even arrested. In just one illustration from 2017, a Chinese gentleman was sentenced to far more than five several years in jail for promoting VPN application, The Guardian reported.
On Chinese social media internet site Weibo, some buyers praised Gu for preventing back again from critics of China, when some others said the responses designed the star athlete seem arrogant.
In 1 well-liked comment, a person wrote that they “envy the calmness and elegance” of Gu “having privilege without the need of realizing (or pretending not to know).”
“It is illegal for me to climb the wall, pretty much it is fxxking not free at all,” the consumer extra.
In an ironic twist, screenshots of Gu’s comment defending China’s web restrictions were even censored on Weibo following they commenced producing the rounds on the website, according to Protocol, which very first reported on the controversy.
Gu — who has also modeled for Louis Vuitton and other luxurious models — has continuously dodged concerns about regardless of whether she renounced her US citizenship in order to contend in China, which doesn’t allow dual citizenship.
“When I’m in the U.S., I’m American, but when I’m in China, I’m Chinese,” Gu has claimed.