A tech-savvy activist is using blockchain technology to preserve content from Hong Kong’s Apple Daily, the city’s biggest-circulation pro-democracy newspaper, which was yesterday forced by the government to shut down as part of a widening crackdown on press freedom and free speech.

Fast facts:

  • The 21-year-old developer started the “dAppleDaily” project to “decentralize Apple Daily” by scraping content from the paper’s website and putting it on Arweave, a decentralized data storage platform, according to a post the developer wrote on Matters, a decentralized content-sharing forum.
  • The developer, who gave their surname as Ho, told Forkast.News that it had been difficult to proceed because the newspaper’s website had been out of service since last night. They said they were able to back up only a small portion of its content. “It’s unjust for the regime to ban Apple Daily,” the developer said. “The truth is important. Human history is important and needs to be written by the people.”
  • Apple Daily printed its last edition today after its website shut down just before midnight on Wednesday. “We are sad to inform you that Apple Daily and Next Magazine’s web and app content will no longer be accessible at 23:59, 23 June 2021, HKT,” the website said, with its URL updated to read: “goodbye.appledaily.com”.

See related article: Can blockchain protect journalism and push back against censorship?