Sina Weibo, one of China’s most popular microblogging sites, introduced new rules for participation this week that discourage anonymous speech and punish spreading falsehoods based on the number of people that falsehood reached.
According to The International Business Times, Sina Weibo—which is something of a Twitter/Facebook hybrid and counts more than 300 million users—introduced new rules for its users on May 28 that give each person a credit rating of sorts. Users start out at 100 points if they sign up with their government-issued ID numbers (like American social security numbers) and a cell phone number; they start out with 80 points if they opt not to divulge that information.
From there, points are taken away if the user is responsible for telling any sort of “falsehood”—from falsified details and images to the exaggeration of events, giving incomplete data, or misquoting others. “The system also punishes those who use code words, homonyms, or abbreviations in their online messages to attempt to bypass Internet censors,” reports Voice of America, a US-based radio program and blog for the Tibetan community.