China Steps Up Antiporn Campaign

The “anti-vulgarity campaign” for websites in China is being stepped up a notch, according to the Wall Street Journal:

Among the latest measures in the crackdown, the China Internet Network Information Center, known as CNNIC, a semiofficial office that administers China’s domain names, said it will tighten oversight of Chinese domain-name registrations. Beginning this week, all new registrants of domain-names with China’s “.cn” suffix are required to show proof they are a government-registered business or organization—effectively making it harder for individuals to set up domestic Web sites.

China’s antiporn campaign, initiated in August, has involved multiple government bodies and state-owned companies including China Mobile Ltd., the country’s biggest telecommunications carrier. The crackdown has shuttered thousands of Chinese Internet sites and hundreds more mobile Web sites viewed by cellphone. Authorities also have begun offering rewards for tips leading to more closures.

Big sites, including Google Inc.’s Chinese site and Alibaba Group’s Yahoo China site have been publicly accused by authorities of facilitating the spread of vulgar content. Both companies made adjustments to their sites after the allegations, without admitting any wrongdoing.

Read also coverage from TIME magazine.