OPINIONS Truth must prevail even in virtual world


Truth must prevail even in virtual world

China Daily

09:03, May 18, 2023

(Photo: Sipa)

The Ministry of Public Security's 100-day crackdown against online rumormongers is bearing fruit. Until Tuesday, the ministry had cracked 300 cases and suspended more than 2,000 accounts that were spreading rumors.

Ten of the 300 cases were cited as examples, including those that were spreading rumors about Hu Xinyu, a 15-year-old high school student who went missing in October 2022 before his body was found in January. While he had committed suicide, the rumormongers were saying he had been murdered and his organs sold. There were others who were fabricating lies about Yunnan villagers going to work in northern Myanmar and having their kidneys removed and sold in the black market.

These account holders are skilled in spreading rumors, as they know what kind of news will find takers, such as kidneys being removed or students going missing. However, they are misusing their skills to commit illegal activities that are detrimental to social order just to gain more followers and become popular by feeding those who love conspiracy theories.

While the rumormongers gained desired public attention, society paid a huge price. The ministry has done a good job by blocking these accounts that spread rumors.

More can be done to prevent similar things from happening in the future. The fact that rumors spread so effectively — as explained by the analogy of a lie traveling around the globe while the truth is still putting on its shoes — is a major problem. It was thus very important to block the accounts that are spreading rumors. For truth to prevail, it is important to ensure that people receive information that is authentic and not false rumors.

It is said in economics that bad money drives out good. The same applies to social networking sites and more needs to be done to ensure that, in the end, truth prevails.

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