Detailed Rules for the Implementation of Internet News Information Services Licensing

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Title: Detailed Rules for the Implementation of Internet News Information Services Licensing
Promulgating Entities:State Internet Information Office
Reference number: 
Promulgation Date: 2017-5-22
Expiration date: 
Source of text: http://news.xinhuanet.com/politics/2017-05/22/c_1121016272.htm

Article 1: These Detailed Rules are formulated on the basis of the "People's Republic of China Administrative Licensing Law" and the "Provisions on the Management of Internet News Information Services" (hereinafter "the Provisions") so as to further increase the level of standardization and rationality in the management of Internet news information service licenses, and to promote the healthy and orderly development of Internet news information services.

Article 2: These Detailed Rules apply to the State and provincial, autonomous region, or directly governed municipality Internet information offices' implementation of Internet news information service licensing.

Article 3: Internet news information service licenses shall be obtained for the provision of Internet news information services to the public through internet sites, applications, forums, blogs, microblogs, public accounts, instant messaging tools, webcasts, and other means shall; and internet new information service activities must not be carried out without a license or beyond the scope of the license.

Article 4: Internet news information services include internet news information collecting, editing, and publishing services; re-publishing services, and distribution platform services.

Of these, collection and editing services refers to services collecting, editing, creating, and publishing news; reprinting services refers to services selecting, editing, and publishing news information published by other entities; and distribution platform services refers to services providing platforms for users to distribute news.

Those obtaining permission to provide Internet news information gathering, editing and publication services may concurrently provide Internet news information reprinting services. Those obtaining permission to provide internet news information dissemination platform services, who will also provide collection, editing, and publication services, or reprinting services, shall obtain licenses for Internet news information collection, editing, publication, and reprinting services, in accordance with law.

Article 5: Those applying for Internet news information service licenses shall meet the following licensing conditions:

(1) They are legal persons established in accordance with law within the mainland territory of the People’s Republic of China;

(2) The principle responsible persons and editor-in-chief are Chinese citizens;

(3) having full-time news editing personnel, content certification personnel and technological protection personnel suited to the service;

(4) They have sound systems for management of internet news information services;

(5) having complete information security management systems and safe and containable technological protection measures;

(6) having the premises, equipment and funds suited to the service.

Of these, those applying for Internet news information collection, editing, and publication service licenses, shall be news units (including units holding news units) or units of news and publicity departments. "News units" refers to newspaper and periodical publishers, radio stations, television stations, news agencies and news film studios that the relevant departments have lawfully approved the establishment of. "Holding", refers to contributing an amount, or possessing a volume of shares, that is 50% or more of the enterprises total capital or total share capital; or where the amount contributed, or the volume of shares possessed, is less than 50%, but has a major impact on the enterprise's decision making News and publicity departments include departments such as publicity departments, network information departments, and departments for radio and television, at all levels.

Internet news information services must not be established by any organizations as Sino-foreign joint venture enterprises, Sino-foreign collaborative enterprises, or foreign-invested enterprises.

Article 6: In accordance with article 10 of the Provisions, those applying for Internet news information services licenses shall provide the following materials:

(1) proof that the main responsible persons and the editor-in-chief are Chinese citizens. Including copies of the principle responsible person and chief editors' identification, and so forth;

(2) The qualifications of full-time news editing personnel, content verification personnel and technological protection personnel. Including basic information on the relevant persons, as well as uniform press credentials issued by the State Administration of Press, Publication, Radio, Film and Television, proof of operations as a news unit, proofs of training and evaluations, and other such materials; and the specific number of personnel shall correspond to the services provided.

(3) Systems for the management of Internet news information services. Including website chief-editor systems, and systems for training and evaluation of operations staff, and so forth;

(4) the information security management structure and technological protection measures. Including systems for information publication review, public information inspection systems, emergency response and handling systems, systems for protection of users' personal information, and so forth; as well as related technological safeguard measures;

(5) Internet news information services' security assessment reports. The security assessment report on the applicants information security management systems and technological safeguard measures is to be prepared by relevant departments or bodies with the relevant qualifications;

(6) Proofs of legal personhood, premises, and capital. Including copies of enterprise business licenses, proofs of legal personhood as a public institution, proofs of ownership of service locations, rental contracts, and other such materials;

(7) Application for an Internet news information service licence; Including the application form, as well as an explanation of the specific form of services to be provided, service plan, and so forth.

Article 7: In addition to submitting the application materials provided for in article 6 of these Detailed Rules, those applying for Internet news information collection, editing and publication service licenses shall also submit proof that the unit or is its holding party is a news unit, or proof that its supervising unit is a news and publicity department, and the comments of that supervising unit. Of these, news unit proofs include "Newspaper Publication Licenses", "Radiao and Television Broadcast Organization Licenses", "Periodical Publication Licenses" (those in possession of "Periodical Publication Licenses" shall provide have provision of 'news information' as referred to in article 2 of "the Provisions" as their principle operation), and so forth; the comments of the supervisory unit primarily include explanations of the relationship between the applicant and the supervising unit, an assessment comment as to whether the applicant meets the licensing conditions, and attach the units' official seal.

Those applying for Internet news information dissemination platform licences, shall submit the platform's system of management rules for accounts and users, user agreement templates, mechanisms for handling complaints, and so forth, in addition to the application materials provided for in article 6 of these Detailed Rules.

Where the applicant is an enterprise legal person, they shall provide the following materials relevant to equity in addition to the application materials provided for in article 6 of these Detailed Rules.

(1) A shareholder structure chart. Including shareholder names, percentage of shares, method of contribution, date of of contribution, and other such information Where stockholders are entities other than natural persons, it is necessary to trace back to natural persons, public institutions, as well as wholly state-owned companies, and explain the person in actual control. The shareholder structure chart must have the unit's official seal affixed, and be signed by the legal representative;

(2) Proofs for shareholders. Where the shareholders are natural persons, it is necessary to provide their identification materials; where the shareholders are entities other than natural persons, it is necessary to provide the entities' names, form of organization, legal representative, and other materials;

(3) Company Charter. Including the company charter and all previous instances of revision;

(4) Promise that there is no foreign investment. The applicants' written promise that there are no foreign investment elements contained in the shareholder structure chart;

(5) Comments of Professional Bodies. The written proof of the veracity, accuracy, and completeness of the above mentioned shareholder materials, issued by law firms or accounting firms, including capital verification reports, legal opinions, and other such materials.

Article 8: In accordance with article 7 of the "Provisions" , cooperation between Internet news information services and domestic Sino-foreign joint ventures, Sino-foreign collaborative enterprises, and foreign-invested companies, involving Internet news information service business, shall be reported to the State Internet Information Office for security assessment, and the following materials submitted:

(1) The circumstances of the putative cooperating enterprise. Including that enterprises' basis information, business licenses, and other proofs of legal personhood.

(2) The circumstances of the putative cooperative operations. Including a letter of intent to cooperate, a cooperation development plan, a cooperation feasibility analysis report, and other such materials;

Where the supervisory unit is a news and publicity department, that supervisory unit's comments on that piece of cooperative operations shall also be submitted.

Where cooperation between Internet news information services and domestic or foreign Sino-foreign joint ventures, Sino-foreign collaborative enterprises, and foreign-invested companies, might cause the Internet news information services to no longer meet licensing conditions, they are not give a passing mark on security assessments.

Article 9: After the State and provincial, autonomous region, or directly governed municipality Internet information offices receive the application materials submitted by the applicant, they shall make following dispositions based on the circumstances and in accordance with law.

(1) Where the application materials are complete and meet the requirements,they are accepted;

(2) Where the application materials are not complete or do not meet requirements, the applicant is informed one time, either on site or within 5 working days, that they should make corrections or supplement materials;

(3) Those that are not required to obtain an Internet news information services license in accordance with law, are not accepted, and the applicant is to be immediately informed and the application materials returned;

(4) Where the subject matter of the application does not fall within the scope of duties, a decision not to accept shall be made immediately, and the applicant is to be told to make an application to the relevant administrative department.

Article 10: After acceptance in accordance with law, the State and provincial, autonomous region, or directly governed municipality Internet information offices are to follow articles 5,6, and 7 in reviewing the applicants' materials, including whether the applicant meets the licensing conditions, and whether the materials are real.

During the course of review, the State and provincial, autonomous region, or directly governed municipality Internet information offices may meet with the applicants' principle responsible persons and chief editors on the basis of actual conditions, and conduct on-site inspections of the recorded address for the website, the actual place or business, the location of website servers, and other relevant premises.

Article 11: The State and provincial, autonomous region, or directly governed municipality Internet information offices shall make a decision to approve or not in accordance with law, based on article 42 of the "Administrative Licensing Law" Those approved are issued an "Internet News Information Service License".

The provincial, autonomous region, or directly governed municipality internet information offices shall report relevant circumstances to the State Internet Information Office within seven working days of making an approval decision.

Article 12: On the basis of article 17 of "the Provisions", internet news information service providers modifying the following matters shall apply to handle modification formalities with the original license-issuing organ within 7 working days of the change being made:

(1) Modification of the company charter, service premises, website name, internet service provider, or other such matters;

(2) Change in the chief-editor, principle responsible persons, holding organization, internet address, and other such matters, or going public, undergoing a merger or division;

Of these, where modifications of chief editors, principle responsible persons, shareholder structures, internet addresses, and other such matters, or where a public offering, merger, or division is conducted so that internet news information service providers might no longer meet the licensing conditions, a penalty is given on the basis of article 23 of "the Provisions",

Where internet news information service providers add service types, they shall obtain the relevant licenses in accordance with law, on the basis of article 6 of "the Provisions".

Article 13: internet news information service providers applying to handle modification formalities provided for in article 12 of these Detailed Rules, shall provide the following materials to the original license-issuing organ.

(1) Modification of the written application; Including issues such as the items for which modification is sought, the reason for modification, and other necessary explanations, and the units charter with a seal affixed.

(3) Materials on the modification items. Explanations and proofs submitted on specific items for modification, including the basic information, qualification certificates, and proof or hiring or dismissal for changes in personnel; or modified business licenses, company charters, rental agreements, and so forth, with the units official seal affixed.

Where the shareholding structure is modified, relevant stock equity materials shall be provided on the basis of article 7 of these Detailed Rules. Where a public listing is involved, materials such as on the specific implementation plan for the public listing, the tertiary board listing plan and the relevant circumstances of the strategic investment organization, shall also be provided.

Where the modification of matters listed in the license is involved, the original license shall be provided.

Article 14: 'Internet News Information Service Licenses' are valid for 3 years. Where the effective period is completed and it is necessary to continue engaging in Internet news information services activities, an application to continue shall be submitted to the original license-issuing organ in accordance with the licensing procedures, within 30 days advance of the end of the effective period, and the following materials are to be provided:

(1) A written application to renew the license. Including an explanation of the operations in the preceding term, an explanation of circumstances involving the licensing conditions of article 5 of these Detailed Rules, as well as other issues that require explanation, and the units official seal is to be affixed;

(2) The original of the license.

Where the supervisory unit is a news and publicity department, that supervisory unit's comments shall also be submitted.

When the effective period for "Internet News Information Service Licenses' is complete, and a continuation has not bee applied for in accordance with law, Internet news information services must not continue to be provided and the original license is voided.

Article 15: On the basis of article 9 of the "Administrative Licensing Law", Internet news information services licenses may not be transferred. Internet news information service providers must not transfer licenses without authorization for reasons such as business adjustments, mergers, or divisions.

Article 16: Where Internet news information service providers terminate services, they shall conduct cancellation formalities with the original licence-issuing body within thirty working days of the termination of service, and submit the following materials.

(1) The written application for cancellation. Including the reason for cancellation and other necessary explanations, with the units' official seal affixed;

(2) The original of the license.

Article 17: On the basis of article 19 of "the Provisions", State and local Internet information offices are to establish spot-check and evaluation systems that combine routine inspections and periodic inspection, and strengthen conduct supervision and inspections of Internet news information service activities, relevant units and individuals shall cooperate.

The results of supervision inspections are to be made public in accordance with law, and social supervision is to be accepted.

Article 18: These Detailed Rules, are implemented at the same time as the "Provisions"

 

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