Photo: JAKUB PORZYCKI/NURPHOTHO/PICTURE ALLIANCE/Deutsche Welle
The initiative, which the companies have decided to carry out of their own volition, since there is currently no legal mandate for it, seeks to “prevent Internet users from pretending to be in other places to spread rumors”, published this Sunday (04.17.2022) the newspaper South China Morning Post.
In recent months, social networks have been the main escape route for the Chinese population to air their fed up with the harsh zero covid policy of the authorities, which includes massive confinements, border closures and the obligation to undergo constant PCR tests. , among other measures.
Although these publications are quickly censored and removed from Chinese cyberspace, the videos and publications have recently leaked quickly to Western networks such as Twitter or Facebook, where videos of residents of Shanghai – confined for three weeks – have been seen confronting the police. and testimonies from the population about the harshness of the confinement.
The Weibo social network, one of the most used in the Asian country with 250 million users and similar to the censored Twitter, already established this policy a few weeks ago and now others will be added, such as Douyin – the Chinese version of TikTok with 600 million accounts. -, Zhihu, Kuaishou (videos) or the Jinri Toutiao news aggregator.
Zhihu, a popular question-and-answer platform, noted that users’ locations will be visible on each post.
Although the Chinese government has increased control over the content that is disseminated on the networks in the last year, for now there is no law that obliges social networks to publish the location of their users.
However, the move comes after the China Cyberspace Administration warned in March that this year’s campaign to “bring order to online chaos” would include cracking down on the spread of rumours.
It is also the main initiative that the platforms have taken in the last five years to promote the transparency of identities on the Internet.
According to the companies cited by the SCMP, the IP address will not be shown, but the province where the user is located, or the country in the case of those accessing from outside China, will be visible.
Postcode (EFE, South China Morning Post)