Ministry Of Industry And Information Technology

Chinese experts demand reforms in anti-spamming laws

By: 
Staff Writer
Published: 
April 12, 2011
News Photo
ght.org.uk
BEIJING, China

Legal experts in China have been quoted in one of the country's state-run newspapers,  China Daily, suggesting reforms are needed to combat the increasing level of spam in China. They highlighted fraud-based spam, and said that in five regions of China, including Shanghai and Guangdong provinces, fraud cost mobile phone users more than 1 billion yuan ($153 million) over the course of 2009.

"We need a long-term and systematic method to curb the spam," said Wang Yongjie, deputy dean of the law school at the University of Political Science and Law in Shanghai.

Currently spam is a major problem in China, and mobile phone users receive, on average,  more than 11 spam text messages every week. The main issue, however, is that much of this is sent legally. Some agencies in Beijing charge a mere 12,000 yuan for assisting companies apply for a legal license as a service provider. The licenses are granted by the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology, and enable the companies to send spam messages without fear of prosecution.

The proposed reforms would include greater cooperation between the government and China's three national telecom networks in reporting and following up on complaints regarding spam. Lawyers specialising in privacy laws in China have also also suggested more profound changes, stating that civil laws need to be updated to take into account technological changes which have facilitated the collection and spread of huge volumes of personal information, including phone numbers, addresses and car registrations.

Chinese 3G internet user numbers top 50 million

By: 
Staff Writer
Published: 
February 28, 2011
News Photo
Image: hotcellularphone.com
BEIJING, China

The total number of 3G users surpassed 50 million in January, according to the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology (MIIT), three years after third-generation (3G) networks were introduced in China by the country's three major telecommunications companies. That number is expected increase further to 150 million by the end of the year, the ministry said.

3G communication is a generation of standards for mobile communication devices that include access to voice and video calls, mobile internet and mobile TV. 

According to statistics for January released by China Mobile, the company had the largest total of 3G users in China, at 22.6 million, while China Unicom had 15.5 million and China Telecom 13.6 million. The three telecom giants each currently offer a number of subsidised 3G devices, and are introducing products such as customised mobile phone cases in an attempt to attract new users.

Software firms to be given new tax breaks in China

By: 
Staff Writer
Published: 
February 11, 2011
News Photo
Image: cnq.ca
BEIJING, China

China's State Council announced in a statement on Wednesday that Chinese software companies will be granted new income tax exemptions, and will also continue to enjoy preferential tax treatment under the government's scheme to promote value-added services. Shares in Chinese software companies rose upon the release of the news, with China National Software & Service Co Ltd posting the largest rise, surging 5.04% in Thursday's trading.

The new stimulus package includes preferential tax policies and support for research and development, and industry analysts have suggested that the corporate tax cut alone will add an extra 5 to 10 percent to Chinese software companies' profits this year. Under the scheme, software companies that have been established for 15 years or more will be exempt from corporate income tax in their first to fifth years after reaching profitability. Between the sixth and 10th years, the companies will then pay 50 percent of the standard taxes due.

Chinese software companies as a whole have grown rapidly in recent years, with an average growth rate of 28% across the industry. Figures from the Chinese Ministry of Industry and Information Technology show that sales in the industry in China reached a total of $203 billion over 2010, a jump of 31 percent from the sector's 2009 figures.

38.64 million 3G users in China

By: 
Staff Writer
Published: 
November 26, 2010
News Photo
BEIJING, China

The number of third generation (3G) mobile telecommunication users in China tripled year-on-year with the figure reaching 38.64 million by the end of October, according to the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology (MIIT).  Approximately 25.38 million users were new subscribers in the past year. The number of 3G users of each of China's top three telecommunication operators, China Telecom, China Mobile and China Unicom, exceeded 10 million by the end of October, the MIIT data showed Wednesday.

Earlier this month, the ministry said that China aimed to have 150 million 3G mobile users by 2011, while investment in 3G development would hit 400 billion yuan.The number of mobile phone users were up by 94.83 million to reach 842 million during the Jan-Oct period, while fixed-line subscribers decreased by 13.65 million to about 300 million during the same period, the MIIT said.

China Mobile, with 575 million subscribers as of the end of October, now is the world's largest mobile carrier. China's telecommunication industry reported 744.8 billion yuan (109.53 billion U.S. dollars) in revenues during the first ten months of 2010, up 6.6 percent year on year.

Business revenue of mobile telecommunications made up 69.84 percent of the total, while fixed-line revenues accounted for 30.16 percent, dropping 3.2 percentage points year on year, the MIIT said.

Goojje facing lawsuit filed by Google

By: 
Staff Writer
Published: 
February 12, 2010
Goojje, Google
http://www.china.org.cn/
BEIJING, China

Goojje and Google are facing off in the internet ring with Google claiming copyright infringement over Goojje's logo.

Goojje's logo is claimed to resemble the logo of Google Inc and also contains a paw print sign similar to Baidu Inc, China's largest Internet search engine in China.

Despite efforts from a Beijing-based law firm representing Google, Goojje has kept their logo and interface as of yesterday afternoon. However it falls short of the copyright sign and a link indicating the website's license number issued by the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology.

The Goojje team have invested less than 30,000 yuan ($4,400) for the website set-up and have told China Daily over the phone that "the website is our team's achievement," and "it's impossible that we would close it down."

If Goojje does not change the logo by Monday they will probably face a lawsuit filed by Google, sources have announced.

False rumours regarding internet blocking.

By: 
Staff Writer
Published: 
January 7, 2010
www.51.com Photo
www.51.com
BEIJING, China

Rumors circulating online of the blockage of 51.com and other websites have once again been proven to be without foundation. Contrary to the wide-spread reporting that 51.com, a face book-like Chinese language website, was being blocked, the site remains online.

The blocking of websites in China is widely discussed on the local bulletin boards though the online audience in China varies in their opinions. Many feel the blocking of some sites is necessary to maintain a level of decency. Opponents often cite censorship arguments as exaggerated and that almost any content should be allowed online.

Dr. Zhang of the Ministry of Industry And Information Technology agrees that some content must be blocked in the interest of China's youth. "It is not appropriate that pornography be available to children", Zhang stated. "Of course we block content - in fact we reward those who report pornographic sites".

Mark Wells, a Beijing-based corporate lawyer stated that foreign websites that infringe the online content laws of China face a formidable barrier. Once a site is blocked in China, it has virtually no way to become 'unblocked'. "Should a website owner feel their site has been unfairly blocked, there are procedures in place to address the matter.

Lawsuit launched against Green Dam Youth Escort

By: 
Staff Writer
Published: 
January 7, 2010
BEIJING, China

Internet filtering software "Green Dam Youth Escort" is once again making headlines. An American company, Cybersitter, of Santa Barbara, Califormia filed the lawsuit in a Los Angeles federal court alleging 3,000 lines of code from its content filtering software was copied.

The Green Dam Youth Escort program is designed to block access to censored materials on the internet. The program was developed by two Chinese software companies: Zhengzhou Jinhui Computer System Engineering and Beijing Dazheng Human Language Technology Academy. The development contract was put to tender and ultimately funded by the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology with 17-million-yuan.

Hardware manufacturers have been included in the action that aledges that more than 56 million copies of the software have been distributed accross China. "This lawsuit aims to strike a blow against the all-too-common practices of foreign software manufacturers and distributors who believe that they can violate the intellectual property rights of small American companies with impunity without being brought to justice in US courts," Cybersitter's attorney Greg Fayer said in a statement.

Intellectual property lawyer, Mark Wells of Beijing Zhenbang Law Firm, represents several foreign software companies in China. "The case is quite simple really - either there was a crime or there wasnt. If the criminal can be identified in China, he or she will be held to account, no doubt.

In relation to the nature of the claim, there is creedance to the line of thought that actions undertaken in foreign jurisdictions are less than authoritative. This may be the reaction in China, especially if the US company can not satisfy a higher burdon of proof than a Calafornian civil court would utilize. That is, I don't see this particular case being important in China."

Green Dam Filtering into Computers

By: 
Staff Writer
Published: 
July 22, 2009
BEIJING, China

Controversial Internet filter Green Dam will be included with some PC packages sold in China, despite a decision to delay the software's launch. "The Green Dam porn filter will be included in all PCs participating in our August promotion, which targets students and their parents," said Wu Shaodong, an Acer sales representative in Beijing. Wu believed the free porn filter would make Acer PCs more appealing to parents who want to protect their children from harmful content on the Internet.

The Ministry of Industry and Information Technology (MIIT) delayed the July 1 launch for the Green Dam-Youth Escort filtering software, which would have been mandatory for any new PC produced or sold in China. The software is designed to block violence and pornography but users have repeatedly raised concerns about privacy. The software also contains security flaws and may infringe on intellectual property. Wu didn't think the software's alleged security problems were an issue because all software contained them.

"We will definitely introduce Green Dam to buyers during sales," Wu said. Feng Erbei, a Lenovo Thinkpad sales representative in Beijing, said: "All the latest models of Thinkpad have been delivered with Green Dam included since the beginning of the month."Users could choose to install the software by clicking on a Green Dam desktop icon that is pre-installed on Thinkpad, according to Feng. "We never mention the existence of the software during sales, because we don't want to turn customers away," said Feng.

A MIIT official said the ministry hasn't decided on a new deadline for PC manufacturers to include software. Without a deadline, some manufacturers have taken no action on the software. Sales representatives of Dell and HP claimed the Green Dam porn filter hadn't been included in their PC packages and no instructions regarding the distribution of the software had been received from the manufacturers. "It is understandable for some PC manufacturers to react slowly in implementing the directive without a deadline," said the official.

Meanwhile, Zhao Huiqin, the chairman of Zhengzhou Jinhui Computer System Engineering Co, one of Green Dam's developers, was said to have a close relationship with Wang Youjie, the ex-Party Secretary of Zhengzhou, who was sentenced to life in prison for corruption in 2007. Wang once instructed the local finance bureau to give the Jinhui company a two-million yuan ($292,000) loan, which was crucial to the company's survival when the company faced financial trouble in 1998, China Business News reported yesterday. The company was taken to court by the finance bureau for not paying back the loan on time in 2002. The company still has not paid back in full the two million yuan it owes the government, although it won the 21.8-million yuan bid to develop Green Dam last year.