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China Approves Tighter Rules on Internet Access

Science & Tech  (tags: 'CIVILLIBERTIES!', 'HUMANRIGHTS!', china, ethics, freedoms, HumanRights, government, humanrights, media, politics, UnitedNations, world, computers, business, NewTechnology, internet, safety, technology, tech, society )

- 1966 days ago -
China has tightened its rules on internet usage to enforce a previous requirement that users fully identify themselves to service providers.

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JL A (281)
Monday December 31, 2012, 10:47 am
28 December 2012 Last updated at 07:58 ET

China approves tighter rules on internet access

File photo of free internet service at Beijing airport Hundreds of millions of people in China use the internet, although its content is closely monitored by the authorities

China has tightened its rules on internet usage to enforce a previous requirement that users fully identify themselves to service providers.

The move is part of a package of measures which state-run Xinhua news agency said would protect personal information.

But critics believe the government is trying to limit freedom of speech.

The announcement will be seen as evidence China's new leadership views the internet as a threat.

The Chinese authorities closely monitor internet content that crosses its borders and regularly block sensitive stories through use of what is known as the Great Firewall of China.

However, it has not stopped hundreds of millions of Chinese using the internet, many of them using micro-blogging sites to expose, debate and campaign on issues of national interest.

In recent months, the internet and social media have been used to orchestrate mass protests and a number of corrupt Communist Party officials have been exposed by individuals posting criticisms on the internet.
Continue reading the main story
Internet v officialdom

Organisation of mass protests via social media forced officials to scrap environmentally-questionable projects in Shifang and Qidong
Shaanxi official Yang Daca sacked after internet campaign exposed his many expensive watches, deemed unaffordable on a provincial official's salary
District-level Party boss Lei Zhengfu sacked after a video clip of him having sex with an 18-year-old girl appears on the internet

The new measures come a month after a new leadership, led by Xi Jinping, was installed by the ruling Communist Party.

The new man in charge of the internet, Liu Qibao, has a reputation for taking a hard line on media control. He recently called for "more research on how to strengthen the construction, operation and management of the Internet and promote mainstream online themes".

The new measures now formally require anyone signing agreements to access the internet, fixed-line telephone and mobile devices to provide network service operators with "genuine identification information", known as real-name registration, Xinhua reports.

Real-name registration was supposed to be have been implemented in 2011 but was not widely enforced.

China's biggest internet firm, Sina Corp, warned earlier this year in a public document that such a move would "severely reduce" traffic to its hugely-successful micro-blogging site Weibo, China's equivalent to Twitter with more than 300 million users.

Under the new rules, network service providers will also be required to "instantly stop the transmission of illegal information once it is spotted" by deleting the posts and saving the records "before reporting to supervisory authorities".

The measures are designed to "ensure internet information security, safeguard the lawful rights and interests of citizens... and safeguard national security and social public interests", and were approved by China's top legislature at the closing session of a five-day meeting on Friday, Xinhua reports.

The calls for tighter controls of the internet have been led by state media, which said that rumours spread on the web could harm the public and sow chaos and confusion.

The government has said officially that it welcomes the exposure of official abuses, but a new generation of ever bolder bloggers and commentators pose a threat that the leadership seems determined to counter, the BBC's Charles Scanlon reports.

Kit B (276)
Monday December 31, 2012, 10:51 am

Now that's the China we have come to know and loathe.

Cheryl O (82)
Monday December 31, 2012, 11:17 am
I'm sure before long we will see some huge changes as far as the INTERNET is concerned.

JL A (281)
Monday December 31, 2012, 4:35 pm
You cannot currently send a star to Kit because you have done so within the last week.

Past Member (0)
Tuesday January 1, 2013, 2:43 am
Ros G. since you have a personal connection with China, I can get the fact that you need to be careful of what you say. As an objective person with no personal contacts in China, it disturbs me very much that people in China who practice Fallon Gong are imprisoned, they are used as organ donors - without their consent, and these are peaceful people, the government of China has declared them state enemies.
But hey you need parts from China for your tractor....

Giana Peranio-paz (398)
Tuesday January 1, 2013, 2:44 am
It's a breach of freedom of speech.

Ioannes J (1)
Tuesday January 1, 2013, 4:48 am
Not just China, Israel, Japan, USA, India, UK, and other countries monitor on Internet access to protect Intellectual property, and Personal information.

. (0)
Tuesday January 1, 2013, 9:12 am
The fact that China has the limited internet it does is something.

Roger G (154)
Tuesday January 1, 2013, 3:55 pm
everybody knows that China is run by a gerontogratic mafia of butchers who commited genocide in Tibet and Taklamakan, Uighurs and Tibetans want to be free from the Han invaders, as anybody with a sane mind would..
Those supporting the Chinese dictatorship are either mad or corrupt...

reft h (66)
Tuesday January 1, 2013, 5:54 pm
In China, sites like Care2 would probably be banned, or so heavily censored there would be no point in coming here.

JL A (281)
Tuesday January 1, 2013, 6:00 pm
You cannot currently send a star to june because you have done so within the last week.

Past Member (0)
Tuesday January 1, 2013, 6:11 pm
bad, but we're not much better

JL A (281)
Tuesday January 1, 2013, 6:23 pm
You cannot currently send a star to Ana because you have done so within the last week.

g d c (0)
Tuesday January 1, 2013, 6:50 pm

JL A (281)
Tuesday January 1, 2013, 8:45 pm
Thank you Ros for helping us all remember what can be components of an international or global community: all too often people forget that not all families are all in one country or that everyone's friends are not limited to only in the same country and that social media can be even more important for others with such factors creating communications challenges than for ourselves.

Tanya W (65)
Wednesday January 2, 2013, 5:59 am
Big Brother is watching you - sounds like China once agian is frightened to let the people have a open mind that might lead to free speech. If they let the people choose they might discover greater things that the country can acheive.

JL A (281)
Wednesday January 2, 2013, 8:57 am
You are welcome and the exchange you describe may also mean you're raising future peacemakers for our world Ros. You cannot currently send a star to Ros because you have done so within the last week.
You cannot currently send a star to Tanya because you have done so within the last week.

JL A (281)
Wednesday January 2, 2013, 2:28 pm
Ros, you have shared with us all how to be good examples as we parent effectively--thank you.

Past Member (0)
Thursday January 3, 2013, 1:53 am
J.L. A. "you're raising future peacemakers for our world Ros."
Apparently does not include Israel based on his comment to me!!!

JL A (281)
Sunday January 6, 2013, 3:10 pm
I don't see where you get that Shalvah--if you read about how the children are being raised (and you did not comment specific to the children).
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