Help Wanted: Internet Thought Police; Immediate Openings

The network of government-paid “moderators” hanging out on Chinese Web sites to help steer the public in the right direction (i.e, pro-CCP) is growing, and they are hiring.

China’s communist authorities have intensified their campaign against the party’s biggest potential enemy – the internet – with the recruitment of a growing army of secret web commentators, sophisticated new monitoring software and a warning that all bloggers and bulletin board operators must register with the government or be closed down and fined.

The escalation of the government’s effort to neutralise critical online opinion comes after a series of large anti-Japanese, anti-pollution and anti-corruption protests, many of which were organised or publicised using instant messaging services, chatrooms and text messages.


Applicants for the job – mostly drawn from the propaganda and police departments – were told they had to understand government policies, know political theory, be politically reliable and understand internet technology. Successful candidates have been offered classes in Marxist theory, propaganda techniques and updates on the development of the internet around the world.

A summary of objectives declared that commentators should “be proactive in developing discussion, increase control, accentuate the good, avoid the bad, and use internet debate to our advantage.”

Reports that at least two other localities have recruited similar teams suggest the strategy is being encouraged by the central government. Few will admit to the practice, but Nanjing officials said the city was hiring 20 online commentators from the ranks of its existing employees.

Full- and part-time positions are available. I recommend that you not mention you’re a Peking Duck reader during your interview.

China’s blossoming cottage industry of Internet manipulation and censorship drew some criticism from one of our old friends, the so-called Stainless Steel Mouse:

China’s leading bloggers were equally scathing. “The government’s tactics are too funny. They are actually hiring staff to curse online,” said Liu Di, who was arrested last year for comments she posted under her internet moniker Iron Mouse. “But it also shows that the government can find no better way to deal with netizens’ discussion. Compared to other media in China, the internet is still the most free. It is powerful among young people no matter whether they are chatting online or playing games. It will be difficult for the government to control.”

Difficult, yes. But so far they’re doing a damned good job.

Via the great CDN.

The Discussion: 13 Comments

“I recommend that you not mention you’re a Peking Duck reader during your interview.”

On the contrary! Experience stalking–and especially trolling–the blogs of the “capitalist running-dogs” a plus definite. LOL!

June 14, 2005 @ 2:23 pm | Comment

maybe bingfeng is CCP recruiter hahah

June 14, 2005 @ 2:34 pm | Comment

un-fucking-believable. duh.

June 14, 2005 @ 4:32 pm | Comment

Hmm. They must be refining the screening, snooping, and blocking technology daily, too.

Your blog and comments are available today, but not Yahoo mail or Yahoo groups. Usually that means something happened somewhere that impacted on you-know-who.

June 15, 2005 @ 12:26 am | Comment

What you all need to appreciate here is that China’s internet screening technology is all developed and supplied by US companies! These companies know very well why the CCP wants to introduce this technology, and it is happy to develop such internet screening systems with largley the China market in mind.

These US companies, and the US Government too for that matter, therefore need to take some of the responsibility for this kind of Big Brother type technology, and it global introduction.


June 15, 2005 @ 1:46 am | Comment

You have to know that the US based company CISCO SYSTEMS has provided all the materials to Chinese government to control the web in China, Thanks America for freedom and moral lessons !!!

June 15, 2005 @ 6:12 am | Comment

how confused the freedom is

June 15, 2005 @ 6:31 am | Comment

I love the motherland. I love the morning in the motherland. (saw that bit of English in a movie here once)

June 15, 2005 @ 7:11 am | Comment

And now there are re-education camps right there in the U.S. of fuckin’ A.

June 15, 2005 @ 12:49 pm | Comment

Vaara, thanks for that. Unfuckingbelievable.

June 15, 2005 @ 2:12 pm | Comment

“The motherland?” Isn’t that really AFRICA, for all of us? (Mitochondrial DNA and all that.) ๐Ÿ™‚
If you REALLY want to rile some (SOME) Chinese people, then tell them all Humans are descended from Africans. All of us. And then the hard core racists among the Chinese (actually a minority of the Chinese, but a substantial and vocal minority) will reply with some pseudo-science about how the Chinese evolved separately from the rest of Mankind. And then you can reply,
“Ah, so you mean the Chinese aren’t Human?” And then their heads explode. (I’ve done this a few times, with the hard core racists in China.)
And then the ammunition – to be held in reserve – against the WORST Chinese racists, is to point out that “apes and monkeys have flatter noses than Whites or Africans do – therefore, aren’t bigger noses a mark of higher evolution?” And then your Chinese Racist will go silent, having been checkmated.
…But all that said, I’ve found that MOST Chinese are no more racist than most Americans. Maybe even less racist than most Americans, overall, because actually China has LESS of a history of institutionalised racism than America.
(Sorry for digressing from the subject of this thread, but “the motherland” got me thinking about Chinese racism)

June 16, 2005 @ 12:33 am | Comment

Disruptive technology

Two examples of how technology is outpacing attempts to deal with it: 1. China is recruiting more internet censors and commentators. Today’s unlinkable SCMP reports Beijing is hiring up to 4,000 new censors to watch over the city’s cybercafes and ISPs….

June 16, 2005 @ 7:58 pm | Comment

Ivan … hahahahahahahahahahahaha. I’m going to remember it, and use it. What higher compliment can I pay you than that?

June 17, 2005 @ 2:40 am | Comment

RSS feed for comments on this post. TrackBack URL

Sorry, the comment form is closed at this time.