Notice concerning issuance of the “Rules on the Management of Information from Professional Activities of News Employees”
All provincial (regional, municipal” press and publications bureaus, the Xinjiang Production-Construction Corps press and publications bureaus, all Centre and State organs’ ministries and commissions, all democratic parties, all people’s organizations’ newspaper and periodical controlling departments, major central news work units:
In recent years, the phenomenon that news employees abuse information gained during their professional activities has appeared now and then. In some cases, information involving secrets has been wilfully disseminated and spread in violation of secrecy protection laws and regulations, in some cases, information obtained during professional activities has been published on online platforms without authorization, in some cases, unpublished reports of a news work unit have been handed over to other domestic and foreign media for publication, in some cases, news work unit resources have been used to seek improper gain, this disturbs the regular news dissemination order, and harms the interest of the Party and the State. In order to realistically strengthen management over information from professional activities of news employees, on the basis of the “State Secret Protection Law” and other such relevant laws and regulations, SAPPRFT has formulated the “Rules on the Management of Information from professional Activities of News Employees”, these are hereby issued, please implement them earnestly.
State Administration of Press, Publications, Radio, Film and Television
30 June 2014
Rules on the Management of Information from professional Activities of News Employees
Article 1: In order to strengthen management of information from professional activities of news employees and standardize the news dissemination order, on the basis of the “State Secret Protection Law”, the “Labour Contract Law”, the “Copyright Law” and other such laws and regulations, these Rules are formulated.
Article 2: Information from professional activities of news employees as mentioned in these Rules, refers to all sorts of information, source materials as well as news writings collected and processed by journalists, editors, broadcasters, anchor persons and other newsgathering and editing personnel of news work units as well as other news employees that provide technical and other such assisting activities, during the process of collecting news, participating in meetings, listening to communications, reading documents and other such professional activities, this includes State secrets, commercial secrets, unpublished information, etc.
Article 3: News work units must persist in the principles of acting according to laws and regulations, seeking benefit and avoiding harm, being good at management and appointments, and keeping things manageable and controllable, strengthen management over information from professional activities, and guarantee that news employees use information from professional activities in a scientific, rational, standardized and orderly manner.
Article 4: News work units shall complete secrecy preservation systems, they shall clearly stipulate the scope of information and secrecy preservation limits of information involving State secrets that news employees encounter in their professional activities, complete State secret carrier dispatching, transmission, use, reproduction, preservation and destruction systems, it is prohibited to illegally reproduce, record and store State secrets, it is prohibited to transmit State secrets in any medium or in any way, it is prohibited to touch upon State secrets in personal interaction and communication.
News employees shall undergo secrecy preservation education and training when they take up their position, and sign a letter of commitment on secrecy preservation.
Article 5: News work units shall, according to the relevant provisions of the “Labour Contract Law”, sign a secrecy preservation agreement with news employees concerning information from professional activities with news employees, with relation to commercial secrets, unpublished information, professional writings and other such secrecy preservation matters, and establish uniform management systems for information from professional activities.
Secrecy preservation agreements must clearly indicate the rights ownership, use scope, post-dismissal or retirement duties and liability for breach in relation to information from professional activities of news employees, in a categorized manner.
News employees may not, in violation of the agreements in the secrecy preservation agreement, provide information from professional activities to other domestic and foreign media and websites, or become “special correspondents”, “special reporters”, “special contributors” or column writers of foreign media.
Article 6: News employees may not use information from professional activities to seek improper gain.
Article 7: News employees opening blogs, microblogs, WeChat accounts, etc., with their professional identity, must obtain approval and filing from their news work unit, their work unit is responsible for daily supervision and management duties.
News employees may not, in violation of the agreements in the secrecy preservation agreements, leak or publish information in public activities through blogs, microblogs, public or individual WeChat accounts, or any other channel, or at forums, lectures or any other venue.
Article 8: News employees leaving or retiring from their positions must return all materials and documents involving secrets, and must implement secrecy preservation duties for the secrecy preservation period provided in laws or regulations, or in the agreement.
Article 9: News work units must make signing secrecy preservation commitment letters and secrecy preservation agreements for information from professional activities into a necessary condition for the appointment and professional assignment of news employees, they may not be appointed or assigned without having signed [these documents].
Article 10: Newsgathering and editing personnel applying for or exchanging journalist cards, must hand over relevant submission materials according to the provisions of the “News Journalist Card Management Rules”, where submission materials do not include commitment letters or secrecy preservation agreements for information from professional activities, the issuance of journalist cards is not granted.
Article 11: News work units shall, when engaging in annual news journalist assessment, report the situation of signature and implementation of news employees secrecy preservation commitment letters and secrecy preservation agreements to the administrative department of press, publications, radio, film and television.
Article 12: Where news employees violate secrecy preservation commitment letters and secrecy preservation agreements, and use information from professional activities without authorization, news work units shall punish their liability for breach of agreement according to contract, administrative or disciplinary punishment is imposed in consideration of the circumstances, and their civil liability is punished.
Article 13: The controlling departments of news work units shall supervise their subordinate news work unit’s completion of secrecy preservation commitment and secrecy preservation agreement systems, and implementation of management duties; administrative press, publications, radio, film and television departments shall strengthen daily supervision and inspection of the situation of management of information from professional activities by news work units in their administrative areas.
Article 14: Where news employees disseminate information from professional activities without authorization, causing grave consequences, administrative press, publications, radio, film and television departments cancel their news journalist cards according to the law, a note of bad professional conduct is entered, and they are punished with banishment from or restrictions to the profession.
Article 15: News work units whose management of information from professional activities of news employees is chaotic, resulting in loss or leaks of secrets, extortion and blackmail, infringement and other such grave problems, are investigated and punishment according to the law by administrative press, publications, radio, film and television departments, etc., and are ordered to rectify [the situation], those who refuse to rectify [the situation] or rectify [it] unsatisfactorily will not pass annual assessment, where circumstances are grave, permits are cancelled, and the liability of responsible persons for the news work unit and directly responsible persons is punished according to the law.
Article 16: Where news employees, in violation of regulations, use information from professional activities to cause loss or leaks of secrets, the liability of the corresponding person is punished according to the law, where crime is suspected, the matter is submitted to the judicial organs for processing.
Article 17: These rules take effect from the date of promulgation.