The Download: Open source censorship in China, and US kids are more anxious than ever

Earlier this month, thousands of software developers in China woke up to find that their open-source code hosted on Gitee, a state-backed Chinese competitor to the international code repository platform GitHub, had been locked and hidden from public view.

Gitee released a statement later that day explaining that the locked code was being manually reviewed, as all open-source code would need to be before being published from then on. The company “didn’t have a choice,” it wrote. Gitee didn’t respond to MIT Technology Review, but it is widely assumed that the Chinese government had imposed yet another bit of heavy-handed censorship.

For the open-source software community in China, which celebrates transparency and global collaboration, the move has come as a shock. Code was supposed to be apolitical. Ultimately, these developers fear it could discourage people from contributing to open-source projects, and China’s software industry will suffer as a result. Read the full story.

—Zeyi Yang

The must-reads

I’ve combed the internet to find you today’s most fun/important/scary/fascinating stories about technology.

1 America’s children are more anxious than ever
And it runs deeper than the pandemic. (NYT $)
+ The relentless stream of bad news is making us all feel bad. (Wired $)
+ How to mend your broken pandemic brain. (MIT Technology Review)

2 Digital surveillance programs make immigrants feel like prisoners
They’re touted as a more humane alternative to detention, but ankle tags carry stigma and stoke anxiety. (Coda Story)
+ The CIA and US military are spending huge amounts of money on metaverse projects. (The Intercept)

3 The Wikipedia editor exposing the predatory world of cryptomania
That doesn’t mean she’s reveling in its current implosion. (WP $)+ Six months into the crypto crash, investors are making the same mistakes. (Motherboard) 
+ Fraudsters are using a deepfake of Elon Musk to steal crypto. (Motherboard)
+ This crypto reality dating show sounds like a parody of itself.
(Input Mag) 

4 A new ancestry-predicting DNA tool is solving missing-people mysteries 🧬
But experts are wary that DNA phenotyping could further fuel racial discrimination in policing. (NYT $) 
+ Our museums are a treasure trove of genomic data. (Ars Technica)