Netease Tech, 1/05/10
Chinese social networking site 51.com and Chinese IT portal IT168 became inaccessible at approximately 4:00 PM on December 5. A representative of Beijing Xinnet Digital Information Technology (Xinnet), the domain registrar for both websites, said that both domains were suspended as per instructions in a government notice received by Xinnet.
An insider at Xinnet confirmed that the domains were rendered unable to resolve because authorities had ordered they be taken offline.
51.com suggested it might be the case that an overseas domain management organization such as ICANN had mistakenly decided the domain name had expired, causing the resolution failure. 51.com said it is still discussing the problem with Xinnet.
Editor's Note: According to Sina Tech, the two websites are currently on "client hold." According to one DNS provider, a "client hold" is the most straightforward way for a domain registrar to prevent access to a domain.