It became evident on the 16th that as a general rule, Chinese authorities would soon ban domestic media companies from using quotes from foreign media sources and information garnered from Weibo, the country’s popular microblogging website. Citing the need to “form a healthy reporting structure,” among other reasons, authorities are preparing to lay out strict reporting regulations

The General Administration of Press and Publication (GAPP) and the State Administration of Radio, Film and Television (SARFT), state authorities that control domestic media, made it clear they will start “requesting reporters and editors” not to use reports from foreign media sources or citizen-generated content from the Internet without first gaining prior approval.

If reporters act in defiance of the directive they may be temporarily banned from pursuing their profession, among other penalties, and management may be ordered to keep a closer watch on editorial departments. The date the directive is to go into effect was not made clear.

In January, the Southern Weekly, a newspaper based in Guangdong Province, was ordered to change its editorial by the Communist Party Propaganda Department. Complaining about the action on Weibo and other websites, the paper’s reporters won nationwide sympathy from people posting messages of support on the Internet. Based on incidents such as this, it is thought the Xi Jinping administration is becoming more cautious toward “public opinion” formed through collaboration between the media and the country’s more than 500 million Internet users.

Source: MSN