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Beijing gives ultimatum to unregistered microbloggers

(Xinhua)

09:28, February 08, 2012

BEIJING, Feb. 7 (Xinhua) -- Beijing authorities said Tuesday that the city's users of Twitter-like microblog services who fail to register with their real names by March 16 will be banned from posting on those websites.

The ultimatum came nearly two months after the city introduced guidelines mandating real-name registration for microbloggers, according to a meeting held Tuesday by the Beijing Internet Information Office (BIIO).

Starting from March 16, unregistered users will no longer be able to post or repost on microblogging websites, though still able to read other people's postings, according to the meeting.

Following the guidelines, new users have been providing their true identities when registering microblog accounts since January 1.

After Beijing's initiative, several other Chinese cities, including Shanghai, Guangzhou and Shenzhen, adopted similar rules, as authorities believe microblogs help spread rumors and vulgarities.

Nearly half of China's 513 million Internet users frequent the near-instant service to gather news and spread views.

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