The British Broadcast Corporation’s (BBC) English-language website and mobile application have been blocked in China, as confirmed to WikiTribuneby the BBC.
Although the BBC’s English-language website was blocked in 2014, this seems to be first time the BBC’s app has been blocked.
“It appears that much of the BBC’s content has been blocked in China. We are considering the best approach to re-establish services to our audience,” a BBC spokesperson told WikiTribune.
The block happened over the weekend, according to a tweet by BBC China correspondent Stephen McDonell. The reason for the blackout remains unclear.
The BBC recently transitioned to a more secure HTTPS protocol in the last few weeks, which makes it significantly harder for internet service providers to delete individual pieces of content or track which articles or videos users have been looking at (The Guardian).
WikiTribune has contacted the Chinese embassy in London for comment.
The Chinese government last blocked access to the BBC English-language website in 2014. Then-BBC Global News director Peter Horrocks said it appeared to be “deliberate censorship.” The reason for the block still remains unclear.