China now has over 23 million internet users. While most are in the more affluent coastal areas, there are people throughout the country with internet access. Despite government efforts to control internet use, several recent incidents when government propaganda tried to cover up official misdeeds, the true story rapidly spread throughout the country, and the world. The government has been forced to recant publicly in these incidents. The government cannot afford to shut down the internet, as it is a growing component of economic growth.