China to launch new campaign to regulate social media news sites

China to launch new campaign to regulate social media news sites

Outbreak of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in Beijing
People socialise in a bar in a shopping street following an outbreak of COVID-19 in China. (Reuters/Thomas Peter)

HONG KONG: China's top Internet watchdog will launch a new campaign to crack down on the social media accounts of independent news providers, it said on Thursday (Jul 23).

The Cyberspace Administration of China (CAC) will target commercial websites and social media accounts that illegally write and edit news items, and repost news articles from non-compliant sources, the CAC said in a statement on its website.

It would also deal with clickbait stories, misinformation, and other sensationalised online content, it added.

The CAC said it would also regulate online forums and live-streamed lectures, and push media sites to propagate more positive energy.

READ: In Hong Kong national security law, echoes of China's own cyber crackdown

China's strict online censorship rules have tightened in recent years with new legislation to restrict media outlets, surveillance measures for media sites and rolling campaigns to remove content deemed unacceptable.

In June, CAC penalised several of the country's leading live-streaming and video platforms for spreading "low taste" content, reprimanding women wearing low-cut clothes and men for indecent dancing and using foul language.

Source: Reuters/dv