China is planning to implement a system wherein its citizens will be ranked and given ratings based on a certain set of specified criteria, like social media activity and online obedience to the state. The system, called the Social Credit System, is said to be in place for a country-wide launch some time in 2020. Some Chinese citizens don’t seem to be bothered by it at all, but many have expressed staunch opposition.[Editor’s note: The U.S. deep state uses China as a “proving grounds” for police state surveillance and tracking systems that will be deployed in the United States. Read this story carefully, because it describes exactly what’s coming soon to America… and in fact is already under way via the censorship / obedience tactics of Google, Facebook, YouTube and Twitter.]
Right now, Chinese citizens are already subjected to country-wide surveillance systems and censorship schemes run by the government itself, and many people across the world have called these acts inhumane and highly unethical. Yet China keeps outperforming basically everyone in matters of technological innovation, and it remains a hub of high-tech inventions.
The Social Credit System, according to online reports, will be a government-imposed “citizen score” that can be used to measure your worth to employers, private institutions, and even other individuals. It is said that it could be used by hiring managers to decide whether or not to offer you a job, or by banks to decide whether or not you should be given a loan.
The vast amount of data needed to make this kind of system a success is already available – in large quantities – thanks to China’s thriving digital economy. According to James Gautrey, a technologist who works at the investment manager Schroders, the existence of services like WeChat can only help to turn this vision of the future into a reality. “WeChat has a billion users,” he said. “So by capturing its data, the government can see what all those people are thinking and doing. It’s a dream for them.”(Related: Real life sci-fi: Minority Report-style security system in China called “Dragonfly Eye” uses AI to identify criminals using a massive facial recognition database.)
Indeed, the existing surveillance and censorship systems in the country might play a huge role in the completion of the forthcoming Social Credit System. And as for the Chinese citizens themselves, they evidently don’t seem to mind.
A recent survey conducted on Chinese consumers, conducted by Dentsu Aegis, reportedly showed that there is enough trust in the government to implement such a system successfully and without worry. Based on the official survey results, 70 percent of the participants – of which there were 20,000 – believe that it will have a positive impact on society.
Francis Lam, the head of technology and innovation at marketing agency Iscobar China, believes that the reason for this is quite clear. “Digital services gives us more freedom and make lots of things more convenient,” he said. “They help us enjoy life even more.” And so, he thinks it is far more likely for the Chinese to embrace the Social Credit System instead of fighting against it.
It also ties in to the country’s current culture of innovation “Chinese technology companies are no longer just copycats,” explained Lam. “People feel proud of the advances made and of how they affect our status in a global sense. So they are willing to try anything new.”
With all of that said, the implementation of such a system can still be quite dangerous. It is exclusionary by design, and may end up harming the lives of millions of individuals if they don’t conform to what the prescribed “online behavior” should be according to the government. Such a system is unprecedented, so it would be difficult to predict exactly how it will affect the economy and society at large. But it is sure to crush any remaining last hope of freedom for the citizens of China, who already live under the cruel thumb of communism.
Read more about systems that make use of people’s personal data in PrivacyWatch.news.