China's cyberspace regulator summons Quora-like platform Zhihu for publishing illegal information
Published: Dec 20, 2021 10:55 PM
A user uses Zhihu app. File photo: VCG

A user uses Zhihu app. File photo: VCG

The Beijing cyberspace regulator announced on Monday that it was asked by the Cyberspace Administration of China (CAC) to summon the online question-and-answer platform Zhihu for publishing illegal information and demanded "immediate rectifications" based on the country's Law on Cybersecurity. 

The CAC said the online platform shall earnestly fulfill its main responsibility, improve the information security management system, and shall not provide a space for the dissemination of illegal information. 

The Beijing Internet Information Office filed a case for administrative punishment against Zhihu for its illegal behavior. 

The company responded on Monday that it sincerely accepts the criticism and will resolutely implement a rectification and improve the management of information release reviews, public information inspections and emergency responses. It also announced that it will suspend the related functions during the rectification.

Zhihu, known as "the first stock of knowledge sharing," was listed on the New York Stock Exchange on March 26.

The Beijing Cyberspace Administration said it will further urge relevant websites and platforms to strengthen their internal management, provide services in accordance with laws and regulations, and maintain a clean cyberspace.

On December 14, the CAC announced it summoned Chinese twitter-like Sina Weibo for talks concerning the repeated display of prohibited information and content on its platform that violate laws and regulations.

Facing an administrative penalty of 3 million yuan ($471,300), Sina Weibo was ordered to address the flagged issues and review the behavior of responsible staff, the CAC said.

The punishments to Zhihu and Sina Weibo are the latest move by authorities in a prolonged internet cleanup campaign in China, a joint action by six ministries and departments launched in June, targeting vulgar and harmful online content.

Earlier this month, the CAC ordered Chinese media review and rating site Douban to immediately rectify and deal with serious breaches after the company repeatedly failed to conduct a proper scrutiny over its content. The firm was fined 1.5 million yuan ($235,000).