China’s drug authority the National Anti-Drug Commission Office registered an account on micro blogging site Weibo. Their platform comprises three channels. The first informs visitors of the dangers of taking drugs. The second lists where abusers can go for help. The third is for citizens wanting to report drug incidents on http://on.china.cn/1fMeq34. The authority hopes this will increase involvement in its National Anti-Drug Campaign.
Service Providers Help Fight China’s Drug Problem
On June 29, 2015 Chinese internet companies and telecoms operators signed a protocol the Internet Society of China prepared. Other contributors included Cyberspace Administration of China, seven state agencies and the Commission Office itself. This protocol asks users and service providers to exercise self-discipline, and avoid gossiping about China’s drug underground. Internet providers now have to be especially careful to avoid trade in illegal substances.
Reporting on China’s Drug War
China Mobile, China Telecom and China Unicom have all signed up for the National Anti-Drug Campaign, alongside five courier services and fifty large web-based enterprises. Police have arrested 32,871 suspects since April 2015 and solved 14,878 drug violations. However, this may only be the tip of China’s drug iceberg. The Ministry of Police reports seizing 225 firearms, 9 tons of component chemicals and almost 4 tons of drugs in their raids.
Social Media in the Firing Line
Cyberspace Administration of China has contributed to cleansing China’s drug scourge by shutting down 832 websites it found offensive. During the signing ceremony, Assistant Minister of Public Security Liu Yuejin announced that over 83,000 pieces of illegal information were also cleansed. This is in terms of the campaign to advance China’s drug free environment. This is the duty of everybody on the internet including social media.
Can Social Media Close the Net?
The National Anti-Drug Commission Office’s account on Weibo has the power to achieve much. The biggest risks it faces are vicious comments between neighbours and manipulation by drug lords to damage competition. If this initiative in China’s drug war is to bear fruit then perpetrators of both kinds deserve stern treatment.