BEIJING—Despite its quiet allegiance to communist principles, China has found that money talks louder than political philosophy, at least as far as the eradication of porn is concerned. The government announced Friday that is will pay cash to people who tip it off to internet and mobile sites that contain “vulgar” content or advertise for sex products.
The government department coordinating the public campaign is called, prosaically, the China Illegal Internet Information Reporting Centre (CIIRP). Founded in 2004, one of its functions is to receive public reports about illegal and harmful information on the internet within the border of China, and then pass them on to the authorities.
CIIRP defines “illegal and harmful” information as that which is against the basic principles of the constitution; hinders national security and national unity; instigates ethnic hatred and discrimination, or hinders ethnic unity and solidarity; spreads obscene and pornographic content, or content related to gambling, violence, murder, terror and criminal abetting; or that insults or libels others, or violate the rights of the others.
According to a CIIRP statement issued Friday, internet users who report websites to the police that contain lewd and pornographic material are eligible for rewards ranging from 1,000 yuan ($146) to 10,000 yuan ($1,465). If more than one report on the same website is submitted, CIIRP says the first informer will be rewarded. A designated committee will be in charge of deciding if informers are qualified for rewards and how much they should be awarded.
CIIRP claims that it received more than 13,000 online tips and 500 phone calls in the first day of reporting, 10 times the usual daily number. The department also says that since Jan. 5 authorities have shut down 1,250 websites and deleted more than 3.2 million items of online information alleged to contain porn and vulgar content, and that 41 people have been detained for "promulgating porn online."