The Chinese government is planning to enforce tough new rules intended to compel websites in the country to only allow comments to appear online from people whose real name is known, and whose real-world identities have been verified.
The new rules will be imposed from 1 October and will apply across the board - from comments on news stories to short status updates on social media websites, and everything in between.
Sites and services that don't comply could be be closed down, or the internet as a whole across China could even be temporarily switched off, according to Bleeping Computer.
While previous attempts to force people to use their real identity online haven't been successful on perfectly reasonable technical grounds, having the legal power to shut down entire websites is intended to force them to comply or be destroyed.
Past attempts to enforce identity verification rules, first introduced two years ago, were met with two-factor authentication systems using mobile phone numbers. This complied with the letter of the rules as every mobile phone number in China is registered to a real-world identity and address.
China's government claims that it is clamping down on online commenting in order to prevent the spread of "pornographic [content], false advertising, bloody violence, insulting slander, disclosure of personal privacy and other illegal information," at least according to the Cyberspace Administration of China, in its statement.
The organisation doesn't, of course, mention using the laws to monitor and profile individual Chinese citizens, or controlling freedom of expression.
And exactly how it will be implemented by each company hasn't been specified - nor whether those real identities will have to be used publicly online, or just known by the businesses hosting the services.
But, however it is implemented, it's another bump in the road for anyone within China concerned with privacy.
Expect governments around the world to be 'inspired' to introduce similar rules very soon.
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