Feeds

Beijing Big Brother gets bigger

New laws tighten grip on media, technology

Security for virtualized datacentres

Beijing today attempted to defend sweeping new powers which gag foreign media and bar citizens from subscribing to news from abroad. The laws were published Sunday and went into effect immediately.

The government says its new rules are designed to "promote the dissemination of news and information in a sound and orderly manner".

As well as explicitly banning direct access to foreign news from within China, incoming news will be filtered and censored by Communist Party news and propaganda bureau Xinhua.

"Measures for administering the dissemination of news and information in China by foreign news agencies" also override previous dispensations aimed at business news, granting Xinhua a monopoly on a lucrative and burgeoning market.

Media rights campaigner Reporters Without Borders said: "It is outrageous that Xinhua, the Communist Party mouthpiece, should claim full powers over news agencies. It also poses a threat to news agency journalists, who play a key role in the circulation of news in China.

"Xinhua is establishing itself as a predator of both free enterprise and freedom of information."

The measures appoint Xinhuu as enforcer. It will have powers to give warnings, demand changes within a prescribed time limit, suspend release of content, and withdraw rights to release information in China.

Speaking to reporters today, government Foreign Ministry spokesman Qin Gang said: "China uses the law to protect the interest of its citizens and foreign journalists."

Stories and photographs which Xinhau believes "undermine China's national unity, sovereignty and territorial integrity" or "endanger China's national security, reputation and interests" are top of the list of forbidden information.

Beijing has ensured news in the technological powerhouses of Hong Hong and Taiwan are covered. Human Rights in China executive director Sharon Hom said: "Not only the international press community but also IT companies should be very alarmed by these measures."

Xinhua's statement detailing the regulations is here. ®

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

More from The Register

next story
The 'fun-nification' of computer education – good idea?
Compulsory code schools, luvvies love it, but what about Maths and Physics?
Facebook, Apple: LADIES! Why not FREEZE your EGGS? It's on the company!
No biological clockwatching when you work in Silicon Valley
Happiness economics is bollocks. Oh, UK.gov just adopted it? Er ...
Opportunity doesn't knock; it costs us instead
Ex-US Navy fighter pilot MIT prof: Drones beat humans - I should know
'Missy' Cummings on UAVs, smartcars and dying from boredom
Yes, yes, Steve Jobs. Look what I'VE done for you lately – Tim Cook
New iPhone biz baron points to Apple's (his) greatest successes
Lords take revenge on REVENGE PORN publishers
Jilted Johns and Jennies with busy fingers face two years inside
Sysadmin with EBOLA? Gartner's issued advice to debug your biz
Start hoarding cleaning supplies, analyst firm says, and assume your team will scatter
Doctor Who's Flatline: Cool monsters, yes, but utterly limp subplots
We know what the Doctor does, stop going on about it already
prev story

Whitepapers

Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Cloud and hybrid-cloud data protection for VMware
Learn how quick and easy it is to configure backups and perform restores for VMware environments.
Three 1TB solid state scorchers up for grabs
Big SSDs can be expensive but think big and think free because you could be the lucky winner of one of three 1TB Samsung SSD 840 EVO drives that we’re giving away worth over £300 apiece.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.