The Ministry of Public Security is to clean up live broadcasts on the internet and crack down on illegal activities associated with them.
The operation, expected to be carried out nationwide from the end of July to October, will shut down the accounts, channels and platforms for online live broadcasts involving illegal activities, the ministry said.
The operation will target information or material advocating pornography, violence, terrorism and other crimes, and programs organizing pornographic performances or gambling.
Anyone involved in these illegal activities will be subject to punishment, the ministry said.
As live broadcasts have become increasingly popular in China, problems have emerged. These include the broadcasting of pornographic performances and gambling, the ministry said.
A joint working system will be set up between public security departments’ internet safety units and broadcast platform providers.
People are encouraged to report any violations to www.cyberpolice.cn, a website set up by the ministry.
China has 150 major websites providing online live broadcasting platforms with a total audience of more than 200 million, according to the ministry.
A statement from Inke, a widely used live streaming app that has been downloaded more than 100 million times since being founded a year ago, said: “We support the operation. Stricter supervision from authorities will help boost the sound growth of online live broadcasts.”
A 1,000-strong review team from the company oversees such programs around the clock. “It will report violations to police departments immediately and provide assistance in combating illegal activities,” the company said in a statement.
China’s media watchdog has also stepped up efforts to clean up internet culture by banning indecent material in videos online.
In April, the State Administration of Press, Publication, Radio, Film and Television ordered Papi Jiang, a video blogger, to take her videos offline for her use of “swear words and insulting language” in the show, which had more than 10 million followers and has raised 12 million yuan ($1.8 million) from investors.
Shen Yi, a professor of cyberspace management at Fudan University, said there should be proper management of cyberspace and the parameters for indecent information should be stipulated and made public.
These should be announced after fully consulting the public and be based on concerted opinion from society, Shen added.