Examples of PRC Government Regulation of Online Public Sentiment
On January 18, 2023 the Central Cyberspace Affairs Commission posted an announcement on its website that was launching a "Special Action to 'Loudly and Clearly Improve the Internet Environment for the 2023 Spring Festival" (中央网信办启动“清朗·2023年春节网络环境整治”专项行动). The goals of the "special action" included:
- "curbing the spread of bad culture" (遏制不良文化传播);
- "creating a positive, civilized and healthy online public opinion atmosphere for the Spring Festival" (营造积极向上、文明健康的春节网络舆论氛围).
The "special action" targets included:
- Standardizing the management of information about entertainers that is presented online;
- Dealing with "Internet celebrity" bloggers who have a history of sensationalizing bad conduct and deliberately focusing on the ugly side of things;
- Investigating people who flaunt wealth online and clean up information that deliberately flaunts extravagant lifestyles and maliciously speculates about concealed wealth;
- Preventing the rendering of gloomy emotions;
- Controlling the spread of anxiety and exaggerating the dark side of society by publishing false information such as returning home notes and returning home experiences.
On March 12, 2023, the CAC posted on its website the "Notice on Launching a Special Action to 'Loudly and Clearly Strictly Rectify the Chaos of 'Personal Media'" (关于开展“清朗·从严整治‘自媒体’乱象”专项行动的通知). The target of the "special action" included "harmful information" on "key platforms such as social networking, short video, and webcasting." Examples of "harmful information" included:
- Selecting high-profile topics such as the private economy and publishing "controversial and misleading remarks to incite opposition and tear-up the social consensus."
- Creating harmful information that damages the image of the Party and government.