Thursday, April 21, 2011 attacked by Chinese government

In a digital letter sent to its members, announces that the site has been a target to cyber attacks coming from China, probably ordered by the Chinese government. This is the third day in a row when the site is attacked by Chinese government coordinated hackers.

Amazon Web Services hosted now reports:

" is currently unavailable due to a problem at our hosting provider"

While AWS Service Health Dashboard reports instance connectivity, latency and error rates for its Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud  node in N. Virginia and database instance connectivity and latency issues in the same node.

The hackers aren't particularly targeting the website, but a petition hosted on it. The targeted petition is demanding the release of Chinese artist Ai Weiwei and it's been signed by over 100,000 people.

Acclaimed dissident artist Ai Weiwei -- who helped design the famed “Bird’s Nest” stadium for China’s Olympics -- was arrested on April 3rd by Chinese security forces at the Beijing airport. His office and studio have been ransacked, and no one has heard from him since.
The international art community, including the directors of more than twenty leading museums (including the Tate Modern, Museum of Modern Art, and the Guggenheim) started a petition on The petition quickly gained worldwide attention, including in the New York TimesLA Times, and Guardian, triggering reactions from political leaders around the world, who are calling for Weiwei's release. Activists have organized peaceful protests at Chinese embassies and consulates.

When the petition page will be available, you can help by signing the petition:
Due to these repeated attacks, the site may be slower than usual or unavailable at times over the next few days.

As's Patrick says: "Autocratic governments know that the internet is a democratizing force, and they'll do everything they can to suppress online activism. Know that we stand with you for change, and that we will continue to fight to make sure your voice can be heard. "

Update: Due to attacks on, Amazon WS customers may experience collateral damage, already announced that:

" reddit is in "emergency read-only mode" right now because Amazon is experiencing a degradation. they are working on it but we are still waiting for them to get to our volumes. you won't be able to log in. we're sorry and will fix the site as soon as we can. "