Remember all those promises China made to expand press freedoms in return for the honor (and financial burden) of hosting the Olympics? Well it appears there’s some backsliding going on. The Chinese websites of the VOA, BBC as well as Hong Kong-based Ming Pao and Asiaweek have been re-blocked since early December. Can’t say we didn’t see that one coming, to be honest. Well, here’s a roundup of the news that did make it through the great firewall. The State Council has announced a raft of measures intended to buoy the ailing real estate market. Check here for the nitty gritty, but let’s just say that buyers of second homes are going to receive a little help. Speaking of help, can someone throw a lifeline to China’s shipbuilders? Apparently they’re in worse straits than their foreign competitors, facing a 44% decline in new orders compared to the global average of 37%. Analysts don’t expect things to turnaround for the next two to three years and say the industry must be restructured if it’s going to survive. While we’re on the topic of ships, China’s considering sending its navy to Somalia to fight piracy, and for once we’re talking about actual piracy, and not the IPR-infringing kind.