Feeds

China mulls further social-network controls

Communists worried about the astroturf menace

The Essential Guide to IT Transformation

Communist Party officials in Beijing have flagged up concerns about the growth of micro-blogging websites in China.

According to a Reuters report, China may be pushing for more robust controls of such sites. The article cites a commentary piece written for the People's Daily by individuals who pen the Communist Party's quarterly Qiushi journal.

Twitter, Facebook and other networking portals are already heavily filtered in China.

But Beijing also has sites much closer to home that it may eventually single out for tougher measures, even though it admits that it is lagging behind on regulation.

Sina Corp-owned Weibo, for example, hit a 195 million userbase in late June, signalling a huge growth in micro-blogging in China over the past year.

Brit rock bores Radiohead created a page on Weibo in July, which almost immediately scooped up 50,000 followers from the People's Republic at launch.

The commentary didn't single out Weibo, however. But Beijing is clearly concerned about its usage.

"Internet opinion is spontaneous, but increasingly shows signs of becoming organised," said the commentary.

"Among the many controversies stirred up on the internet, many are organised, with goals and meticulous planning and direction, and some clearly have commercial interests or political intentions in the background," it continued.

"Unless administration is vigorous, criminal forces, hostile forces, terrorist organisations and others could manipulate public sentiment by manufacturing bogus opinion on the internet, damaging social stability and national security."

The ruling party scribes called for a more cautious approach to adopting internet technologies in the future, by putting administration and regulation in place before their use becomes widespread in China in order to prevent a backlash against clamp-downs.

Weibo, like Twitter in other parts of the world, is in fact used by government officials as a communication tool in China. So the idea of altogether canning it is seemingly out of the question.

Here in the UK, Prime Minister David Cameron recently mulled over how to stop social media being "used for ill", following the recent riots in England.

His rhetoric was quickly shot down, and the Coalition later abandoned such a plan. ®

Build a business case: developing custom apps

More from The Register

next story
Scotland's BIG question: Will independence cost me my broadband?
They can take our lives, but they'll never take our SPECTRUM
Bring back error correction, say Danish 'net boffins
We don't need no steenkin' TCP/IP retransmission and the congestion it causes
Auntie remains MYSTIFIED by that weekend BBC iPlayer and website outage
Still doing 'forensics' on the caching layer – Beeb digi wonk
NBN Co adds apartments to FTTP rollout
Commercial trial locations to go live in September
Samsung Z Tizen OS mobe is post-phoned – this time for good?
Russian launch for Sammy's non-droid knocked back
Telstra to KILL 2G network by end of 2016
GSM now stands for Grave-Seeking-Mobile network
Seeking LTE expert to insert small cells into BT customers' places
Is this the first step to a FON-a-like 4G network?
What FTC lawsuit? T-Mobile US touts 10GB, $100 family-of-4 plan
Folks 'could use that money for more important things' says CEO Legere
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
The Essential Guide to IT Transformation
ServiceNow discusses three IT transformations that can help CIO's automate IT services to transform IT and the enterprise.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
How modern custom applications can spur business growth
Learn how to create, deploy and manage custom applications without consuming or expanding the need for scarce, expensive IT resources.
Build a business case: developing custom apps
Learn how to maximize the value of custom applications by accelerating and simplifying their development.