China steps up online controls with new rule for bloggers

SourceEgypt Independent
SectorTechnology
CountryMiddle east

TAIPEI, Taiwan (AP) — Ma Xiaolin frequently wrote about current affairs on one of China’s leading microblogging sites, where he has two million followers. But recently, he said in a post, the Weibo site called and asked him not to post original content on topics ranging from politics to economic and military issues. “As an international affairs researcher and a columnist, it looks like I can only go the route of entertainment, food and beverage now,” the international relations professor wrote on Jan. 31. Ma, who often posted on developments in the Mideast, is one of many popular influencers working within the constraints of China’s heavily censored web who is finding that their space to speak is shrinking even further with the latest policy changes and a clean-up campaign run by the country’s powerful censors. He declined an interview request. Beginning next week, the Cyberspace Administration of China will require bloggers and influencers to have a government-approved credential before they can publish on...read more...