China Daily (Canada) - - CHINA -

To clean up the on­line en­vi­ron­ment and rein in ru­mor­mon­gers, the State In­ter­net In­for­ma­tion Of­fice, China’s cy­berspace watch­dog, is­sued a rule tar­get­ing in­stant mes­sag­ing tools. The rule con­tains 10 ar­ti­cles, ma­jor pro­vi­sions of which in­clude: • In­stant mes­sag­ing tool ap­pli­cants must pro­vide their real iden­ti­ties when they reg­is­ter ac­counts, and on­line ser­vice providers are re­quired to pro­tect the in­for­ma­tion. • Peo­ple or de­part­ments that want to open pub­lic ac­counts on in­stant mes­sag­ing plat­forms must be reg­is­tered with the coun­try’s In­ter­net man­age­ment and su­per­vi­sion au­thor­i­ties. • Me­dia and their web­sites are al­lowed to open pub­lic ac­counts to pub­lish and for­ward po­lit­i­cal news, while some non-jour­nal­ism in­sti­tutes with on­line news and in­for­ma­tion ser­vice li­censes can also do that. • Un­li­censed pub­lic ac­counts are banned from pub­lish­ing or for­ward­ing po­lit­i­cal news. • Gov­ern­men­tal de­part­ments, en­ter­prises and in­sti­tu­tions are en­cour­aged to open pub­lic ac­counts, and to pro­vide re­lated ser­vices to the pub­lic. • For those breach­ing the rules, in­stant mes­sag­ing providers and op­er­a­tors should give a warn­ing, re­strict re­lated posts or, in se­ri­ous cases, close ac­counts. Al­leged il­le­gal in­for­ma­tion can be stored while be­ing re­ported to the govern­ment.

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