China publishes new rules on algorithm recommendations

The Chinese State Internet Information Office, the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology, the Ministry of Public Security and the State Administration for Market Regulation have jointly issued the Internet Information Service Algorithm Recommendation Management Regulations. The regulation aims to protect the national security interests, social public interests, and aid the development of ‘healthy’ services online. It regulates algorithmic recommendation technology, such as information filtering, personalised push, sorting and selection, and requires providers to publicise basic principles, purposes and operating mechanisms of the algorithms.

According to this regulation, algorithms also cannot be used ‘to influence online public opinion, evade supervision and management, and monopolize and unfair competition,’ sparking concerns about freedom of speech and interfering with business models of large tech companies.