The State Council Information Office (SCIO; Chinese: 国务院新闻办公室; pinyin: Guówùyuàn Xīnwén Bàngōngshì; lit. 'State Council News Office') is the chief information office of the State Council of the People's Republic of China and an external name of the Central Propaganda Department of the Chinese Communist Party.
|Information office overview|
|Formed||April 8, 1980|
|Jurisdiction||Government of China|
|Headquarters||225 Chaoyangmennei Street, Dongcheng District, Beijing|
|Literal meaning||State Council News Office|
Historically, SCIO was the external name of the Office of External Propaganda (OEP) of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) under an arrangement termed "one institution with two names." In 2014, OEP was absorbed into the Central Propaganda Department, turning SCIO into an external nameplate.
The SCIO was formed in 1991 when the CCP Central Committee decided that the External Propaganda Leading Group (中央对外宣传小组) of the CCP Central Committee should have the name of State Council Information Office externally. The External Propaganda Leading Group was transformed into the Office of External Propaganda (OEP, 中央对外宣传办公室), officially called in English as the International Communications Office. The office was created with the goal of improving the Chinese government's international image following the 1989 Tiananmen Square protests and massacre. According to scholar Anne-Marie Brady, the SCIO became a separate unit from the CCP Central Propaganda Department but still connected to it and was the "public face of this new direction in foreign propaganda work."
In May 2014, the OEP was formally abolished, with its functions absorbed into the CCP's Central Propaganda Department. The SCIO turned into an external nameplate for the Propaganda Department, used primarily for activities of one of its bureaus.
In November 2020, the director of the SCIO, Xu Lin, gave a speech in which he emphasized the need to "resolutely guard against digitalisation diluting the party’s leadership, resolutely prevent the risk of capital manipulating public opinion."
Before its absorption to the Propaganda Department, the OEP had nine functional bureaus, with corresponding ones in the SCIO, as well as supervised organs. It oversaw the China Foreign Languages Publishing Administration, while its seventh bureau oversaw the China Society for Human Rights Studies (CSHRS), a front group established in 1993 dealing with human rights-related narratives towards China.
The office formerly had responsibility for internet censorship in China. The SCIO's Internet Affairs Bureau dealt with internet censorship and repressed "disruptive" activity on the web in mainland China. In May 2011, the SCIO transferred the offices, namely its fifth and ninth bureaus, which regulated the internet to a new subordinate agency, the State Internet Information Office (SIIO). In May 2014, with the abolishment of the OEP, the SIIO (renamed in English as the Cyberspace Administration of China) was absorbed into the newly established Central Leading Group for Cybersecurity and Informatization.
Since the 2014 merger SCIO's nine bureaus are now controlled by the Central Propaganda Department, sometimes used by the department's bureaus as external nameplates.
List of directors edit
- Brady, Anne-Marie (October 26, 2015). "China's Foreign Propaganda Machine". Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars. Archived from the original on 2020-09-18. Retrieved 2020-09-23.
- Brady, Anne-Marie (2008). Marketing Dictatorship: Propaganda and Thought Work in Contemporary China. Rowman & Littlefield. pp. 23, 156. ISBN 978-0-7425-4057-6. OCLC 968245349. Archived from the original on 2021-01-09. Retrieved 2021-05-03.
- Bandurski, David (February 17, 2023). "Co-Producing with the CCP". China Media Project. Retrieved April 21, 2023.
- Lulu, Jichang; Jirouš, Filip; Lee, Rachel (2021-01-25). "Xi's centralisation of external propaganda: SCIO and the Central Propaganda Department" (PDF). Sinopsis. Archived (PDF) from the original on 2021-11-20. Retrieved 2021-11-20.
- "Xu Lin, Deputy Minister of the Central Propaganda Department: Resolutely prevent capital from manipulating public opinion". Guancha (in Chinese). November 19, 2020. Archived from the original on November 20, 2020. Retrieved November 20, 2020.
- "Chinese Communist Party tells online media firms to put loyalty first". South China Morning Post. 2020-11-20. Archived from the original on 2022-06-02. Retrieved 2022-06-02.
- "China's Big Tech Crackdown is Not a Model for the U.S." Human Rights Watch. 2021-03-16. Archived from the original on 2022-06-02. Retrieved 2022-06-02.
- "China defends internet regulation". BBC News. 2006-01-15. Archived from the original on 2009-01-03. Retrieved 2009-01-23.
- Ang, Audra (2009-01-23). "China closes 1,250 sites in online porn crackdown". Associated Press. Retrieved 2009-01-23.
- Wines, Michael (May 4, 2011). "China Creates New Agency for Patrolling the Internet". The New York Times. Archived from the original on May 7, 2011. Retrieved May 5, 2011.
- "State Council appoints officials". Xinhua News Agency. 17 January 2023. Archived from the original on 17 January 2023. Retrieved 17 January 2023.