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Shanghai Enforces Real-name Policy for Microblog Registration

The Chinese city of Shanghai has decreed that micro-blogging users would be required to register their real-names with the service, as the government tightens its iron grip on the use of social media in the country.

Shanghai is the latest Chinese city to pass the real-name policy after Beijing, Shenzhen and Guangzhou.

The new policy states that internet users must use their real-names to register to social media websites and micro-blogs like Weibo, which is the Chinese version of Twitter.

The Chinese government has banned more than 100 websites including Facebook and Twitter and has come up with its own similar services which allow the government to better monitor the web activities of users and censor the content which it deems to be socially inflammatory.

The new rules apply to both private and corporate users and users are free to choose their screen names as long they register their real-names with the websites.

The Shanghai municipal authorities said in a statement that the new rules are ‘in line with Chinese laws and regulations to foster a healthy internet culture so as to better manage social networking websites and instant-messaging tools', The Telegraph reports.