Fong Tak-ho: Propagandists vs the Internet in China

From the Asia Times Online: “In a country where the Communist Party still tries – increasingly without success – to control just about everything, especially the media, the Internet is slipping beyond its grasp. Enraged, the party propagandists have declared war on the Internet deployed, it claims, as a weapon against the state.

China has recently heard a rise in calls from the sector for tougher regulation of the Internet, the rising and vibrant cyber-medium that sometimes slips beyond the grasp of the ruling Communist Party. The first major call was issued in an unusual meeting last month attended by senior chiefs, who vowed that the Internet in China has been ‘exploiting by those with ulterior motives’ to malign the government and the party. Less than four weeks later, the party’s major mouthpiece, the People’s Daily, toed the line, slamming the cyber-media with a critique on December 8. The piece claimed that some ‘hostile forces’ have been maliciously using the Internet for the purpose of splitting and destabilizing society, resulting in possible harm to China’s economy and foreign investment. ”

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