Tuesday, September 27, 2005

The 11 commandments of the Internet in China

Via Reporters sans Frontières.

"You shall not spread rumours", "You shall not damage state security”, “You shall not destroy the country’s reputation”. There are just three of the 11 commandments ordered by Beijing, on 25 September, aimed at bloggers and websites managers.

Reporters Without Borders expressed concern at this latest turn of the screw in an ongoing crackdown on freedom of expression.

"The Chinese authorities never seem to let up on their desire to regulate the Web and their determination to control information available on it ever more tightly,” the worldwide press freedom organisation said.

“These new rules, announced with a fanfare by the official media, are certainly more intended to frighten Internet-users than to codify the use of the Net,” it said. “In fact there is nothing really new in these 11 commandments, which simply repeat that the party has the monopoly of the dissemination of information and that the media’s task is not to be objective but to relay state propaganda.

“These moves to filter the Internet are nevertheless a sign that the Internet frightens those in power, in particular during a period of ever greater social unrest. It’s noticeable that the only new elements in the text relate to banning the calling of strikes or gatherings though the Net,” it said.


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