Yunan Refines 'Implementation Measures for the Administration of Internet Religious Information Services'

A concept picture of rules and regulations for Internet
A concept picture of rules and regulations for Internet (photo:
By Serena TseJanuary 16th, 2024

The Yunnan Ethnic and Religious Affairs Commission and the provincial Cyberspace Administration jointly formulated the "Implementing Rules for the Implementation Measures for the Administration of Internet Religious Information Services in Yunnan Province" (hereinafter referred to as “Implementing Rules”), which came into effect on January 1, 2024.

According to the Yunnan Ethnic and Religious Affairs Commission, the "Implementing Rules” consist of 30 articles, covering the purpose of formulating the document, scope of application, licensing procedure, division of supervision responsibilities, and legal responsibilities.

Article 2 stipulates, “The term ‘Internet religious information services’ as in these implementation rules refers to the provision of services that deliver information on religious doctrines, canons, religious knowledge, religious culture, and religious activities to the public through various forms such as websites, applications, forums, blogs, microblogs, public accounts, instant messaging tools, and online streaming. These services encompass the dissemination of information through text, images, and audio-video formats, including online religious information releases, reposting services, dissemination platforms, and other services related to internet religious information.

Article 10 states, “The ‘License for Internet Religious Information Service’ is valid for three years. Those intending to continue offering Internet religious information services after the license expires must submit a renewal application to the original issuing authority at least 30 days before the expiration date.”

Article 15 says, “The entity that provides Internet religious information services must have at least two information reviewers, and each shall not be concurrently responsible for the information review work of more than two Internet religious information service entities.”

Article 17 adds, “Legal persons or unincorporated organizations with the license must strengthen self-examination or regular checks of released information, inspecting the released information at least once per quarter, and keep inspection records.”

Article 24 stresses, “If actions involve establishing a religious group, religious schools, religious activity venues, and attracting followers or engaging in activities such as fundraising or commercial promotion in the name of religion while providing Internet religious information services, the local religious affairs department has the authority to order corrective action within a time limit.”

- Translated by Poppy Chan

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