China restricts anonymous bloggingSunday, December 3, 2006 at 17:34 | Posted in Bloggers' rights, Blogosphere, China, Freedom of speech, Germany, internet | 1 Comment
As the BBC reports, China is considering to ban anonymous blogging. The new rules would oblige bloggers to provide their real names and ID card numbers when opening a new blog.
Advocates of the idea argue that blog anonymity has encouraged widespread libel and slander. Opponents say blogging is flourishing for the very reason that people are free to express themselves.
The bloggers would still remain anonymous as long as they do not write something which would be considered as “illegal or harmful to the public”. In this respect the Chinese are not even considering to impose as harsh limits to freedom of speech in the Web as are already applied in Germany. The German Impressumspflicht puts bloggers under obligation to publish not only their real name but also their street address, telephone number and e-mail address in their web sites before even publishing anything controversial.
If the new Chinese rules will be adopted, the freedom of speech is going to be even more limited in Chinese blogs than it is at present but Germany will still remain more restrictive than China.