State Internet Information Office Director Lu Wei outlines stronger focus on Internet governance

In an article in today’s People’s Daily, SIIO director Lu Wei has provided concrete information on Internet governance measures that can be expected over the following months. This follows from Xi Jinping’s speech at the recent Propaganda and Ideology Work Conference, which confirmed recent trends that Internet governance is put front and centre. It is not strange to see why this is the case. Not that long ago, the leadership had a relatively strong command of traditional media, certainly where its central political imperatives were concerned. Consequently, the traditional media sphere could be described as a relatively harmonious echo chamber. This made it possible to pin dissent onto a small minority of people. The advent of Internet technology and – granted – the fact that social media were given considerable space to develop in China has upset this relatively satisfactory picture. While it remains an unanswerable question to what extent the leadership was aware of the magnitude of social tensions, corruption and dissatisfaction, the online outpouring of “negative energy” online in recent years seems to have come as a genuine, disconcerting surprise, and makes it considerably more difficult to continue to derive legitimacy from good governance. Furthermore, as Lu recognizes in this article, the Internet has brought the increasing complexity of Chinese society to the fore, and allows for persons with similar interests and ideas to communicate across the regional, sectoral and geographical borders that have hitherto been used to fragment the media sphere. 

So what is to be done about this. First, the Party will enhance its efforts to maintain its dominance in the formation of public information. Recognizing that it is no longer possible to control the publication of factual information, it has redoubled efforts to provide the correct ideological mindset to interpret and contextualize factual information. Second, according to Lu, and as already indicated in recent Red Flag articles, it seems that the enforcement of existing regulations will be upped, and new licensing structures brought in for information and communication platform providers. These measures will also include the enforcement of the real name registration system for microblogs, as well as website registration. Lastly, the Party will strengthen various related measures, including mandatory training and certification for key positions within enterprises and a continuing crackdown on online rumours and other undesired content. 

It is recognized that these objectives require an increased control over the technical side of information networks, as well as a conducive international development. One interesting trend to follow in this regard is the development of Chinese efforts to internationalize control over ICANN. Its 46th Public Meeting was held in Beijing last April, where it announced its approval of Chinese character top-level domains and the opening of its first Global Engagement Centre, run together with the China Internet Network Information Centre and the Chinese Academy of Science. 

Make Online Public Opinion Work Into the Heaviest of Heavies in Propaganda and Ideology Work  

Lu Wei

People’s Daily, 17 September 2013, p. 16

In his important speech at the Nationwide Propaganda and Ideology Work Conference, General Secretary Xi Jinping stressed that, on the basis of the needs of trends and developments, we must make online public opinion work into the heaviest of heavies for propaganda and ideology work, and grasp it. This is a new deployment and a new requirement of the Centre concerning online public opinion work, which fully reflects the Party Centre’s moving with the times and correctly grasping Internet development trends. We must deeply study and implement the spirit of the speech, implement the basic policies of positive use, scientific development, management according to the law and guaranteeing security, we must liberate thoughts, seek truth from facts, reform and innovate, comprehensively improve online public opinion levels with an even more enthusiastic and active spiritual attitude, closely grasp the leadership power, management power and discourse power in online public opinion work, further consolidate the guiding position of Marxism in the ideological area, and consolidate the common ideological basis for the united struggle of the entire Party and the people of all ethnicities in the entire country.

I, Deeply understanding the major significance of making online public opinion work into the heaviest of heavies

We must realistically strengthen our sense of responsibility and sense of urgency, deeply understand the extreme importance of doing online public opinion work well, comprehensively do online public opinion work well with even more powerful measures, and build a desirable online public opinion environment.

Making online public opinion work into the heaviest of heavies is a major policy decision to guarantee national security and ideological security. New network technology and new businesses are developing rapidly, which both stimulated the development and innovation of overall social culture, and intensified the mutual agitation between different ideologies and cultures on a global scope, it further expanded the characteristics of plurality, diversity and variability of our country’s ideological and cultural sphere. Following the development and spread of mobile Internet and intelligent mobile terminals, online information sources and dissemination channels have increased rapidly, the scale and influence of online public opinion is growing ever larger, the Internet is becoming more of a platform for all sorts of thinking trends and all sorts of interests to appeal and coalesce every day. We must persist in comprehensively planning both the domestic and international larger pictures, expand network construction and management strength, closely grasp the online public opinion battlefield, and guarantee national security and ideological security.

Making online public opinion work into the heaviest of heavies is a strategic choice to respond to developments and changes in our country’s media structure and public opinion structure. The Internet and especially social media, also known as “self-media”, have seen great changes and developments, they brought changes to the methods of information dissemination, changed our country’s information dissemination structures and the ways in which people obtain information, and are further changing the structure of social public opinion. The Internet has become an emerging medium with a broad influence, it has become an important place where social opinions generate, and has become an important force influencing social public opinion. At present, our country’s Internet houses nearly 600 million netizens, there are 460 million mobile netizens, among which there are 300 million microblog users. The rapid development of the Internet has brought great changes to the environment, targets, scope and methods of propaganda and ideology work, we must face these sorts of changes squarely, give high regard to this reality, act by seizing opportunities, guide actions according to circumstances and move with the times in adjusting the focus point of our propaganda and ideology work. Under this kind of circumstance, skirting around online public opinion work in discussing mass work will not do. Doing online public opinion work well means marching along the online mass line and doing online mass work, and is a necessary path to do mass work under new circumstances well.

Making online public opinion work into the heaviest of heavies is an important measure to strengthen and innovate social management under new circumstances. The Internet has brought important transformations to people’s expressing information, interacting, communicating, social networking and thinking habits. Networked production and networked life have become normal, a number of netizens with similar purposes and interests cross regions, sectors and national borders, and compose social units and social groups that each have their own symbols, they interact and discuss at all times and places, and influence public affairs and the direction of policy. The Internet’s changing of social structures and social relationships has further increased the difficulty of social management and ideological work. We must deeply understand the profound changes that information technology has brought to the structure of society, and on the basis of the new characteristics of the new stage of social development, put online public opinion work in an even more prominent position, grasp it, strengthen and innovate social management in cyberspace

Making online public opinion work into the heaviest of heavies, is a real requirement to satisfy the popular masses’ daily increasing spiritual and cultural needs, and to strengthen national cultural soft power. At present, the contradiction that the supply of our country’s excellent online cultural products is insufficient and public cultural information services are unsatisfying is relatively prominent, they are not suited to the needs of constructing an advanced Socialist culture, and there still is a relatively large gap with the broad popular masses, daily increasing spiritual cultural needs, the task of developing healthy and upward online culture is arduous and complex. At the same times, from the global point of view, all countries are making the Internet into an important method and carrier for increasing cultural soft power, and adopt all kinds of methods to seize decisive development opportunities. Even though insufficient development has been obtained in developing our country’s online culture, there still is great space for improvement. This requires that we expand the strength of online public opinion work and strengthen the supply of healthy and upward online information, enhance international online dissemination strength and strengthen national cultural soft power.

Making online public opinion work into the heaviest of heavies is an urgent requirement to purify the social environment and protect the healthy upbringing of the youth. The youth occupies the majority of our country’s netizens. Through efforts from many sides, our country’s online environment has generally been preserved relatively well, but because of complex reasons on many side, online obscenity, sex and vulgar tendencies rebound extremely easily, online rumours, online violence and other such uncivilized phenomena happen time and again, gravely upsetting social order, running the social atmosphere and harming the youth’s physical and mental health, the broad masses react extremely strongly against this. We must, in line with a spirit of responsibility towards the Party, responsibility towards the people and responsibility to posterity, firmly grasp online public opinion work, this heaviest of heavies, firmly grasp the purification of the online environment, and realistically grasp this popular sentiment work tightly, well and with effect.

II, Founding a new picture of online public opinion work with a spirit of reform and innovation

We must, according to the new requirements of new deployments, strengthen our political consciousness, a consciousness of the larger picture, a sense of responsibility, a sense of critics, we must dare to take charge, reform and innovate, and found a new picture with a positive and promising spiritual attitude.

Strengthen and improve online positive propaganda and public opinion guidance, vigorously disseminate online positive energy. We must realistically raise online positive propaganda quality and levels, strengthen attractiveness and effectiveness. We must persist in unity, stability and encouragement, putting positive propaganda first, closely revolve around the main line of deeply launching propaganda and education on Socialism with Chinese characteristics and the Chinese Dream, and give rein to  the function of online positive propaganda. We must persist in correct public opinion guidance, incessantly raise online public opinion guidance levels, regardless of whether it is Internet construction, content production, or Internet management, we must always put persisting in the correct orientation first. We must grasp online public opinion guidance timing, extent and effect well, truly start from stressing practical results, research problems, research targets and research strategies, improve online public opinion guidance, and let netizens take this in and trust this. We must strengthen guidance and persuasion concerning all sorts of online thinking trends, confused understandings and social emotions, explanation and guidance concerning online social hot spots and problems, online guidance concerning sudden incidents, we must both reflect the work of the Party and the government, and guide social emotions onto healthy and rational tracks.

Forcefully promote the development of new media, expand and strengthen the online mainstream public opinion battlefield. In the Internet era, promoting media convergence and development is an inevitable trend. If we do not effectively occupy emerging public opinion battlefields, other people will occupy them, and this will form challenges for the power of initiative and power of discourse in our public opinion work. We must strengthen a consciousness about the battlefield, forcefully move forward with the converged development of traditional media and new media, strengthen dissemination strength, credibility and influence, and realistically and substantially implement the principle and requirement that the Party manages the media. We must promote Party newspapers, Party journals, news agencies, radio and television stations, etc., to accelerate the pace of digitalization, networking and mobilization on the basis of consolidating the development of traditional business, and race to seize the initiative in development. We must vigorously respond to the trends of differentiation and objectification of dissemination, tightly grasp the juncture of mobile Internet development, forcefully develop online media, mobile media, etc., and strengthen the construction of all sorts of mobile terminals. We must plan and promote a new round of development of websites publishing news information, and vigorously promote that those meeting conditions go on the market.

Strengthen online social governance, guarantee that the Internet is operated in a standard manner, orderly and according to the law. In online public opinion work, positive energy is the general requirement and keeping control is a hard principle. We must persist in grasping management with one hand and pushing online positive energy with the other hand, grasp matters with both hands, and both hands must be tough. We must persist in scientific management, management according to the law and effective management, implement the “NPC Standing Committee Decision concerning Strengthening Online Information Protection”,

Accelerate the construction of a legal system for the network, accelerate the formation of an Internet management structure that combines legal norms, administrative supervision and management, sector self-discipline, technological safeguards, public supervision and social education, incessantly raise network management efficiency. we must strengthen the construction of an online sincerity and honesty system, and realistically move forward with microblog user real name information registration and authentication work. We must strengthen website registration and filing, and management of access service, domain name, IP address and other basic resources, guaranteeing that website registration and filing information is accurately and truthfully completed. Persist in implementing an administrative licensing system for online information services involving the public interest, perfect market access and withdrawal mechanisms, and implement sector entry prohibitions against those gravely violating laws or regulations.

Persist in unremittingly purifying the online environment, raising the popular masses’ level of satisfaction about the online environment. We must strictly attack acts of disseminating obscene and vulgar information, protect citizens’ personal information, firmly attack online rumours, punish law-breakers according to the law, and realistically standardize online information order, ensuring that our cyberspace becomes clean and crisp. We must strengthen website employee training and implement post certification structures for focus posts. We must complete and perfect report award structures, giving rein to the positive function of the broad netizens in cleaning up the online environment. We must broadly launch the foundation of civilized websites, deeply launch education about the network legal system and morals, strive to foster reasonable online voices, healthy voices and constructive voices, and foster a civilized and rational online environment. We must strive to raise the online accomplishments of the entire society, raise the public’s sense of online security and consolidate a social basis and mass basis for the purification of the online environment.

III, Strengthening and improving Party leadership over online public opinion work.

Strengthening and improving Party leadership over online public opinion work is the fundamental guarantee for the Internet propaganda management front to do its work well.

Realistically put online public opinion work in an important position. All levels’ Party Committees and governments must, from the heights of the overall picture and of strategy, realistically put online public opinion work in an important position, and list it on the important matters agenda. Main responsible cadres must grasp this themselves, integrate Party action with departmental responsibility, and shape a desirable structure in which the entire Party and the entire society jointly does online public opinion work. We must regularly analyse new situations and new issues in the online ideological area, grasp large trends, strengthen guidance and closely grasp leadership power and the power of initiative. We must provide powerful policy support, realistic investment guarantees, and assist the resolution of real problems. We must give high regard to the construction of Internet construction and management leadership ranks, cadres and talent teams, promote those excellent cadres who combine ability and integrity, and have good overall accomplishments, to leading positions, and concentrate even more excellent talents into Internet construction and management teams.

Realistically strengthen talent team construction. In doing online public opinion work well, people are crucial. We must strengthen Internet construction and management team construction, guarantee that the leading power of Internet construction and management is held tightly in the hand of people who are loyal to Marxism, and loyal to the Party and the people. All levels’ leading cadres must give high regard to studying Internet knowledge and raising the capacity to control the Internet. We must earnestly do online celebrity uniting and guidance work well. We must strengthen online editing employee management well, launch large-scale training and shape a line of network talent teams with high political quality and strong professional ability.

Incessantly strengthen investigation and research. We must follow new developments on the Internet, strive to explore new channels and new ways, and incessantly improve online public opinion work. We must pay close attention to problems at the forefront of Internet construction and management, strengthen research, and realistically provide theoretical support to online public opinion work. We must strengthen international exchange and cooperation in the Internet area, establish multi-level, multichannel and comprehensive cooperation mechanisms, and contribute to the building of a rational and fair international Internet order.

(The author is the director of the State Internet Information Office)

把网上舆论工作作为宣传思想工作的重中之重

鲁炜

《 人民日报 》( 2013年09月17日 16 版)

习近平总书记在全国宣传思想工作会议上发表的重要讲话,强调根据形势发展需要,要把网上舆论工作作为宣传思想工作的重中之重来抓。这是中央对网上舆论工作的新部署新要求,充分体现了党中央的与时俱进和对互联网发展趋势的准确把握。我们要深入学习贯彻讲话精神,贯彻积极利用、科学发展、依法管理、确保安全的基本方针,解放思想、实事求是、改革创新,以更加奋发有为的精神状态,全面提升网上舆论工作水平,牢牢掌握网上舆论工作的领导权、管理权、话语权,进一步巩固马克思主义在意识形态领域的指导地位,巩固全党全国各族人民团结奋斗的共同思想基础。

一、深刻认识把网上舆论工作作为重中之重的重大意义

我们要切实增强责任感紧迫感,深刻认识到做好网上舆论工作的极端重要性,以更加有力的举措全面做好网上舆论工作,营造良好的网上舆论环境。

把网上舆论工作作为重中之重,是确保国家安全和意识形态安全的重大决策。网络新技术新业务的快速发展,既促进了整个社会文化的发展和创新,也加剧了世界范围内不同思想文化的相互激荡,进一步放大了我国思想文化领域多元多样多变的特点。随着移动互联网和智能移动终端的发展和普及,网上信息源头和传播渠道急剧增多,网络舆论规模与影响越来越大,互联网日益成为各种社会思潮、各种利益诉求汇聚的平台。我们必须坚持统筹国内国际两个大局,加大网络建设和管理力度,牢牢掌控网上舆论阵地,确保国家安全和意识形态安全。

把网上舆论工作作为重中之重,是顺应我国媒体格局、舆论格局发展变化的战略抉择。互联网特别是有“自媒体”之称的社交网络的裂变式发展,带来了信息传播方式的变革,改变了我国信息传播格局和人们的信息获取方式,进一步改变着社会舆论格局。互联网成为影响广泛的新兴媒体,成为社会意见的重要生成地,成为影响社会舆论的重要力量。现在,我国互联网网民将近6亿人,手机网民有4.6亿人,其中微博用户达3亿人。互联网的快速发展,使得宣传思想工作的环境、对象、范围、方式已经发生了很大变化,我们必须正视这种变化、重视这个现实,顺势而为、因势利导,与时俱进地调整我们宣传思想工作的重点。在这种形势下,绕开网上舆论工作讲群众工作是不行的。做网上舆论工作,就是走网上群众路线、做网上群众工作,是做好新形势下群众工作的必由之路。

把网上舆论工作作为重中之重,是新形势下加强和创新社会管理的重要举措。互联网带来了人们信息表达、交流沟通、社交联络和思维习惯的重要转变。网络化生产、网络化生活成为常态,一些志趣相投、利益相关的网民跨越地域、行业和国界,组成一个个带有一定标识的社会单位、社会群体,随时随地互动讨论,影响着公共事务和政策的走向。互联网对社会结构、社会关系的改变,进一步增加了社会管理和意识形态工作的难度。必须深刻认识信息技术对社会结构带来的深刻变动,根据社会发展新阶段新特征,把网上舆论工作放在更加突出的位置来抓,加强和创新网络空间社会管理。

把网上舆论工作作为重中之重,是满足人民群众日益增长的精神文化需要和增强国家文化软实力的现实要求。当前,我国优秀网络文化产品供给不足、公共文化信息服务不到位的矛盾还比较突出,与社会主义先进文化建设的要求不相适应,与广大人民群众日益增长的精神文化需要还有较大差距,发展健康向上网络文化的任务艰巨而繁重。同时,从世界范围看,各国都把互联网作为提升文化软实力的重要手段和载体,采取各种措施抢占发展先机。我国网络文化发展虽然取得了长足发展,但还有较大提升空间。这都要求我们加大网上舆论工作力度,加强网上健康向上信息内容供给,提升网络国际传播力,增强国家文化软实力。

把网上舆论工作作为重中之重,是净化社会环境、保护青少年健康成长的迫切需要。我国网民中青少年占大多数。在多方面的努力下,我国网络环境总体保持较好,但由于多方复杂原因,网络淫秽色情和低俗之风极易反弹,网络谣言、网络暴力等不文明现象时有反复,严重扰乱社会秩序、败坏社会风气、危害青少年身心健康,广大群众反映十分强烈。我们必须本着对党负责、对人民负责、对子孙后代负责的精神,紧抓网上舆论工作这个重中之重,紧抓网络环境净化,切实把这项民心工作抓紧抓好、抓出成效。

二、以改革创新精神开创网上舆论工作新局面

我们要按照新部署新要求,增强政治意识、大局意识、责任意识、危机意识,敢于担当、改革创新,以积极有为的精神状态开创新局面。

加强和改进网络正面宣传和舆论引导,积极传播网上正能量。要切实提高网上正面宣传的质量和水平,增强吸引力和有效性。要坚持团结稳定鼓劲、正面宣传为主,紧紧围绕深入开展中国特色社会主义和中国梦的宣传教育这条主线,发挥好网上正面宣传的作用。要坚持正确舆论导向,不断提高网上舆论引导水平,无论是互联网建设、内容生产,还是互联网管理,都要把坚持正确导向摆在首位。要把握好网上舆论引导的时、度、效,真正从讲求实效出发,研究问题、研究对象、研究策略,改进网上舆论引导,让网民看得进、看了信。要加强对网上各种思潮、模糊认识和社会情绪的引导和疏导,对网上社会热点问题的阐释和引导,对突发事件的网上引导,既反映党和政府工作,又把社会情绪引导到健康理性的轨道上来。

大力推动新兴媒体发展,做大做强网上主流舆论阵地。互联网时代,推动媒体融合发展是必然趋势。如果我们不有效占领新兴舆论阵地,别人就会占领,就会对我们舆论工作主导权和话语权形成挑战。必须强化阵地意识,大力推进传统媒体和新媒体融合发展,增强传播力、公信力和影响力,切实把党管媒体的原则要求落到实处。要推动党报党刊、通讯社、电台电视台等在巩固发展传统业务基础上,加快数字化、网络化、移动化转型步伐,抢占发展主动权。要积极顺应传播分众化对象化趋势,紧抓移动互联网发展契机,大力发展网络媒体、手机媒体等,加强各类移动终端建设。要规划推动刊播新闻信息网站新一轮发展,积极推动符合条件的上市。

加强网络社会治理,确保互联网依法规范有序运行。网上舆论工作,正能量是总要求,管得住是硬道理。要坚持一手抓管理、一手推网上正能量,两手抓、两手都要硬。要坚持科学管理、依法管理、有效管理,落实《全国人大常委会关于加强网络信息保护的决定》,加快网络法制建设,加快形成法律规范、行政监管、行业自律、技术保障、公众监督、社会教育相结合的互联网管理体系,不断提高网络管理效能。要加强网络诚信体系建设,切实推进微博客用户真实身份信息注册认证工作。要加强网站登记备案、接入服务、域名和IP地址等基础资源管理,确保网站登记备案信息真实准确完整。坚持对涉及公共利益的网络信息服务实行行政许可制度,完善市场准入和退出机制,对严重违法违规者实行行业禁入。

坚持不懈净化网络环境,提高人民群众对网络环境满意度。要严厉打击传播淫秽色情和低俗信息行为,保护公民个人信息,坚决打击网络谣言,依法惩治不法分子,切实规范网络信息传播秩序,使我们的网络空间清朗起来。要加强网站从业人员培训,落实重点岗位持证上岗制度。要健全完善举报奖励制度,发挥广大网民在净化网络环境中的积极作用。要广泛开展文明网站创建,深入开展网络法制道德教育,着力培育网上理性声音、健康声音、建设性声音,培育文明理性网络环境。要着力提升全社会网络素养,提高公众网络安全意识,巩固净化网络环境的社会基础、群众基础。

三、加强和改进党对网上舆论工作的领导

加强和改进党对网上舆论工作的领导,是互联网宣传管理战线做好工作的根本保障。

切实把网上舆论工作摆上重要位置。各级党委和政府要从全局高度、战略高度,切实把网上舆论工作摆上重要位置,列入重要议事日程。主要负责同志要亲自抓,把全党动手和部门负责相结合,形成全党全社会共同做网上舆论工作的良好格局。要经常分析网上意识形态领域的新情况新问题,把握大势,加强指导,牢牢掌握领导权主导权。要在政策上大力支持,在投入上切实保障,帮助解决实际问题。要高度重视互联网建设管理领导班子和干部人才队伍建设,把那些德才兼备、综合素养好的优秀干部选拔到领导岗位上来,把更多优秀人才汇聚到互联网建设管理队伍中来。

切实加强人才队伍建设。做好网上舆论工作,关键在人。要加强互联网建设管理队伍建设,确保互联网建设管理的领导权牢牢掌握在忠于马克思主义、忠于党和人民的人手里。各级领导干部要重视学习互联网知识,提高驾驭互联网能力。要认真做好网络名人团结引导工作。要加强网络编辑从业人员管理,开展大规模培训,形成一支政治素质高、业务能力强的网络人才队伍。

不断加强调查研究。要跟踪互联网新发展,努力探索新途径新手段,不断改进网上舆论工作。要密切关注互联网建设管理前沿问题,加强研究,切实为网上舆论工作提供理论支撑。要加强互联网领域国际交流与合作,建立多层次多渠道全方位合作机制,为构建合理公平的国际互联网秩序作出贡献。

(作者为国家互联网信息办公室主任)

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2 thoughts on “State Internet Information Office Director Lu Wei outlines stronger focus on Internet governance

  1. Pingback: State Internet Information Office Director Lu Wei outlines stronger focus on Internet governance | China Copyright and Media - China Specialist Global Post : China Specialist Global Post

  2. Pingback: 5 ways China’s government will try to control the internet in the near future | memeburn

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