Chinese authorities have detained someone for the first time for spreading panic on mobile messaging app WeChat, state media said on Friday, hours after China imposed new rules on instant messaging tools.
The move is part of a wider government crackdown on online rumors and obscene materials, as well as trying to control the political commentary, we learned that is not sanctioned by the state.
The man was taken into custody Thursday after reports that three people We chat of explosives was shot dead by police outside a hospital in the eastern province of Jiangsu, – told the newspaper subsidiary official Xinhua news agency reported.
Police investigated the claim and found it to be untrue; the report said, adding that the man admitted to disseminate information to try and get attention and boost its online business, an e-commerce merchant.
It was not immediately clear what penalties he might face.
Wechat the hugely popular mobile messaging program run by Tencent Holdings Ltd, which has dozens of widely read accounts of the outspoken columnist on the Internet in recent months, as the cases.
On Thursday, China imposed new regulations on service providers and instant messaging accounts that can send mass messages to their followers, often used in the media and companies. They require public accounts who want to publish or reprint seek prior approval for political news.
Wechat seen by users as a relative haven compared to government censorship over social platforms such as Twitter-like microblogs, including Weibo CORP’s Weibo.
Unlike Weibo, Wechat mainly used to send any other individuals or small groups rather than large audiences.
However, the increase WeChat, which has 400 million monthly active users in March, composed of government controls, and with it a big issue.
Under the rules announced Thursday, public users will need to sign an agreement when they register, promising to “comply with the law, the socialist system, the national interest, human rights, public safety, social, moral customs and authenticity of the information.”
In a commentary published on Friday, Xinhua said, was “a necessary step to clean and healthy internet.”
“Instant messaging services are used by some people to distribute content related to violence, terrorism, pornography and fraud,” the Xinhua news agency said, adding that the new rules would “increase the flow of content that people need.”