Shrinking Anonymity in Chinese Cyberspace

Hello everyone! I would like to point to an article that was published yesterday:

https://www.csis.org/blogs/technology-policy-blog/shrinking-anonymity-chinese-cyberspace

After reading it, I had two things in mind:

  1. Most of what the Chinese government is putting in place already exists with most American (or Western) social networks. If you want to create an account, Facebook asks for your real name, your real photo, your real phone number and a scan of your real ID. The Chinese government is just taking an extra-step to make sure it can also access all these data.
  2. The big news here is that any group or forum “manager” is legally responsible for what’s being written in his group or forum. Someone writes a message to call for assassination of Xi Jin Ping on your “Love, potery and knotting” forum? It’s gulag time for you!

Another interesting point that had already been in discussion before is the establishment of a “digital social credit or rating system”. This is terrifying, but I’m wondering if people understand what are the implications of all this…

As Stanley Lubman explains, “playing many hours of video games triggers a lower credit score, while purchasing diapers earns points for responsible behavior.”

And what about if you buy diapers but don’t have children? “Responsible behavior” or “devious, perverted mind”? :slight_smile:

This would be a major concern for me. Here at Bad Voltage we tend to assume all our users are going to behave and while we can delete posts and ban users who are ‘being a dick’ we are very lucky here in that I’ve only felt the need to do that once and I’m struggling think of anybody who needed similar treatment before I became a moderator.

I would hate to see a forum where the moderators would need to approve posts before they became public. I can think of a few examples where that might be appropriate but I’d much prefer to trust our users first.

The site isn’t hosted in China. The podcast audio isn’t hosted in China. The primary audience for the podcast and the site is not Chinese. I wouldn’t worry about it.

I’m not worried UK and US laws are more sensible but it would be a concern if the UK and US were to adopt the same laws.

Please respect our code of conduct which is simple: don't be a dick.