Guangming Daily Calls for Increased Control of Internet Content, Internet Users' Ideology

May 17, 2005

On April 19, the Guangming Daily Web site published an article by two writers from the Nanjing Military Command Institute calling for increased Party and government control over Internet content and the ideology of Internet users. The authors make the following suggestions:

  • strengthen patriotic education;
  • increase the number of Internet propagandists;
  • require private Web sites to observe strict self-discipline and sign guarantees with their government sponsor.

The authors claim these steps are necessary to counteract not only domestic factors, such as Internet users with "weak powers of discrimination," but also "enemy forces." According to the authors:

[The Internet] has already become a means employed by enemy forces to carry out psychological warfare. Relevant information demonstrates that some enemy forces surreptitiously employ Internet experts and writers as "hired guns," inflame the emotions on the Internet, seduce some people who do not understand the situation into wrongdoing, spread negative emotions, all in order to give rise to social chaos and create social instability.

The threat posed by the free flow of information and the need for the Party and the government to control what Chinese Internet users think is a common theme in China's state-run media.