China’s Top Ideologue Calls for Tight Control of Internet

Little heard from but hugely influential, the professor turned Communist theoretician who has been a major adviser to three Chinese leaders finally stepped out of the shadows on Sunday.

Known as the brain behind President Xi Jinping, Wang Huning made his first major speech since joining the Politburo Standing Committee, the seven-member group that rules China, at a conference created to show off China’s technological strengths to the world.

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China's Xi says country will not close door to global internet
Chinese President Xi Jinping said on Sunday the country will not close its door to the global internet, but that cyber sovereignty is key in its vision of internet development.

Xi’s comments were read by Huang Kunming, head of the Chinese Communist Party’s publicity department at the country’s largest public cyber policy forum in the town of Wuzhen in eastern China.

Starting this weekend, China celebrates its “open” internet after a year of unprecedented censorship
On Dec. 3, researchers, business leaders, and government officials from all over the world will head to the scenic town of Wuzhen in east China for the three-day World Internet Conference. Past attendees include Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales, LinkedIn co-founder Reid Hoffman, Facebook vice president Vaughan Smith—and high-level officials from Russia, Pakistan, and Tajikistan.

Despite its global implications, the name “World Internet Conference” is a bit of a misnomer—the event will showcase the internet not as the world sees it, but as China and its ideological peers see it. And while representatives from China’s government will likely hail the “openness” of the country’s internet, the past year made it all too clear that China’s cyberspace is more restricted than ever.

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