“Friends don’t let friends be retweeted” might be the slogan for a new campaign to stay out of trouble online.
Beijing has stepped up its assault on online rumors and yesterday announced a judicial framework for prosecuting those who transgress. Sending out “false information that is defamatory or harms the national interest” could earn you three years in prison if that post is seen more than 5,000 times or gets more than 500 retweets.
Given how easy it is to manipulate social media activity, people will need to be very careful about what they post, as anyone with a grudge or an agenda could quickly and cheaply push a target’s message over those thresholds. As to what is false, defamatory or harmful to national interests, the definition is not going to be up to the user.
This looks to be the most robust move yet to corral Weibo and social media. The Party is intent on seizing the commanding heights of new media, as it laid out nearly two years ago at the 6th Plenum of the 17th Party Congress.
THE ESSENTIAL EIGHT
Judicial move aims at online rumors|chinadaily.com.cn Internet users who share false information that is defamatory or harms the national interest face up to three years in prison if their posts are viewed 5,000 times or forwarded 500 times, under a judicial interpretation released on Monday. The new guideline, issued by the Supreme People’s Court and the Supreme People’s Procuratorate, defines the criteria for convicting and sentencing offenders who spread rumors online that defame, blackmail or provoke. Those who concoct or edit information that damages an individual’s or organization’s reputation and share this directly or through others can be charged with libel, a criminal offense in China, under the interpretation. // 最高人民法院 最高人民检察院关于办理利用信息网络实施诽谤等刑事案件适用法律若干问题的解释–法释〔2013〕21号
Related: Severe penalties for defamatory retweets in China – Xinhua It metes out punishment for companies and individuals paid to delete online messages or intentionally post false information. If a company’s illegal gross revenues exceed 150,000 yuan (24,500 U.S. dollars) or its illegal gains surpass 50,000 yuan, it will face illegal business operations charges deemed “serious,” according to the judicial interpretation. // good to see crackdown on the dirty deletion business
Related: New rules create online rumor “straitjacket” – Xinhua The new rules could serve as a warning to malicious Internet users that they should not break a legal “bottom line” when posting online. However, the top court’s spokesman, Sun Jungong, stressed that Internet users are still encouraged to expose corruption and other violations despite the new rules, adding that as long as web users are not fabricating information to slander others, they will not face criminal charges.
Related: 牢牢掌握意识形态工作的领导权管理权话语权_2013/17_求是理论网 依法加强网络社会管理。加强网络新技术新应用的管理，对各种论坛、博客、微博、微信、搜索引擎和手机报、移动新闻客户端等具有新闻舆论和社会动员功能的业务，都要纳入许可管理。要通过加强网上主题宣传，改进网评工作，优化网络环境，营造网上正面舆论氛围；通过加强互联网宣传管理机构建设和队伍建设，打造各部门相互配合，社会各方面积极参与的体制机制，构建全国“一张网”管理格局；通过深入开展网上舆论斗争，严密防范和抑制网上攻击渗透行为，组织力量对错误思想观点进行批驳。－－（作者：中共河北省委常委、宣传部长）Hebei Provincial propaganda head channelling xi’s propaganda meeting speech, Internet of course part of it, “online public opinion struggle”, “showing swords”…
Lu Wei: Liberty and Order in Cyberspace (Full Text) – Xinhua | English.news.cn Liberty and Order in Cyberspace ——Keynote speech at the Fifth China-UK Internet Roundtable（September 9, 2013）Lu Wei, Minister of the State Internet Information Office, China 鲁炜：网络空间的自由与秩序（全文） // compare with the Secretary of state Hillary Clinton’s January 2010 speech “Remarks on Internet Freedom” her remarks seem “quaint” in light of recent Snowden revelations: “Governments and citizens must have confidence that the networks at the core of their national security and economic prosperity are safe and resilient. Now this is about more than petty hackers who deface websites. Our ability to bank online, use electronic commerce, and safeguard billions of dollars in intellectual property are all at stake if we cannot rely on the security of our information networks.”…too bad the US has ceded whatever moral Internet high ground it once had
China will stay the course on sustainable growth – FT.com Premier Li Keqiang OpEd in Monday’s Financial Times // Observers ask whether China’s economic slowdown will lead to a sharp decline – or even a hard landing – and whether our reform programme will be derailed by complex social problems. My answer is that our economy will maintain its sustained and healthy growth and China will stay on the path of reform and opening up….Surveyed unemployment at around 5 per cent // Chinese media say this is the first time the government has released this figure
Related: Market Rebound in China Shows Beijing’s Resolve – NYTimes.com my latest Dealbook column, the more bearish will mock me no doubt // Mr. Li’s comments also appear to lay down some important markers for significant economic reforms that may come out of the Third Plenum meeting in November. The reforms decided at that conclave will take many months or longer to implement, but there are increasing signs that the leadership is planning relatively bold moves. One recent reform accomplishment for Mr. Li is the decision to establish a Shanghai free trade zone, for which he apparently “fought strong opposition.” He prevailed, and the plan for the zone was not only discussed at a Politburo meeting in late August but was also called out for its importance to broader reforms in the Chinese-language version of the official Xinhua report on that Politburo meeting. China’s economy still has a lot of problems, but bearish investors may want to be careful fighting the momentum into the November Plenum.
Japan Scrambles Jets for Drone Near Disputed Islands | Defense News | defensenews.com Japan scrambled fighter jets Monday after an unidentified drone flew near Tokyo-controlled islands at the center of a bitter dispute with China, a defense ministry spokesman said. It was the first reported incident of its kind….The drones did not enter Japanese airspace, the official said… China does have drones but when asked about the incident, foreign ministry spokesman Hong Lei said: “I am not aware of the situation.”
Related: Alert 5 » Photo: Unknown UAV flew near Senkaku islands – Military Aviation News An unknown UAV flew near the contested Senkaku islands today, the JSDF reported. Judging from the photo released, it appears to be a Chinese BZK-005 UAV.
Related: 日本，执迷不悟难有出路 钟 声 《 人民日报 》 Zhong Sheng today on Japan. We should expect a heating up of rhetoric between now and september 18, and perhaps more drones or other moves? // 过去一年中，日本侵犯中国领土主权的恶劣行径遭到强有力反击。中国坚定的行动再次表明，中华民族任人欺凌的时代一去不复返了，中国有坚定的意志和足够的实力捍卫国家领土主权
Related: China offers grudging congratulations to Japan | Reuters “We have noted the decision by the International Olympic Committee,” Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Hong Lei told a daily news briefing. Asked specifically whether China had offered congratulations, Hong said such a question should be directed to the Chinese Olympic Committee. In a statement posted on the ministry’s website after the news conference had ended, Hong said that the Chinese Olympic Committee had in fact expressed its congratulations.
Guangzhou to end controversial labor camps|Society|chinadaily.com.cn All detainees in Guangzhou labor camps will have completed their sentences and be released by the end of the year, a senior judge has said. Authorities in the Guangdong provincial capital stopped approving applications for laojiao — a controversial system of re-education through labor — in March. “The police and many legal experts have realized the drawbacks of laojiao and called to abolish the system, which has become outdated,” Yu Mingyong, deputy president of Guangzhou Intermediate People’s Court, was quoted as saying by local media.
PBOC’s Zhou Says LGFV Reliance on Land Sales Is ‘Problem’ – Bloomberg Chinese local government financing vehicles’ reliance on land sales and rising land prices to repay debt creates “problems,” People’s Bank of China Governor Zhou Xiaochuan wrote in a commentary….In his comments yesterday, Zhou also touched on the importance of preferred stocks and convertible bonds to capital markets as China’s economy and market develops. Contingent convertible bonds are a source of emergency capital, he said. // 资本市场的多层次特性 –中国人民银行行长 周小川
Related: China banks seen issuing hybrid debt to cope with bad loans, boost capital | South China Morning Post It was telling that the mid-sized domestic deal for a second-string issuer involved two bulge-bracket brokerages – the domestic securities arms of Credit Suisse and Goldman Sachs. The banks were testing a hybrid instrument that will become the workhorse for recapitalising China’s banks, a looming trillion-yuan-plus initiative unfolding over the next three to five years.
As Chinese Farmers Fight for Homes, Suicide Is Ultimate Protest – NYTimes.com latest installment of New York Times series on urbanization… // Amid the turmoil, the government is debating new policies to promote urbanization. A plan to speed up urbanization was supposed to have been unveiled earlier this year, but it has been delayed over concerns that the move to cities is already stoking social tensions. New measures are also being contemplated to increase rural residents’ property rights.
Related: China Needs Beijing to Be Even Bigger – Bloomberg not what the government appears to be planning…and in the case of Beijing, where is the water to support this? Economic theory Huang cites is useless if it does not address the massive natural resource constraints // What China needs Li to implement this fall is a more efficient urbanization process — one in which cities are allowed to evolve organically in response to changing conditions. This will require a financing system that provides the right incentives; social services and residency policies that facilitate rather than restrict labor mobility; land-use guidelines that promote more concentrated rather than dispersed development; and transport systems that encourage a more efficient location of activity. This would probably lead to larger and denser but more environmentally friendly and livable cities. If China gets it right, its biggest cities will then generate the productivity gains needed for the economy to grow at 7 percent or more for the rest of this decade. –(Yukon Huang is a senior associate at the Carnegie Endowment and a former World Bank country director for China.)
Related: 审计署官员集中披露棚改乱象 监督内容将覆盖四大环节 | 每经网 there is corruption in urban slum/shantytown renovation…but the auditors are on te case now, says national business daily // 核心提示： 涉及亿万资金的棚户区改造工程，自2008年启动以来就接受审计署的跟踪审计。最新审计情况显示，一些工程项目存在将建设用地用于商业开发等其他用途、部分代建企业等单位违规出售保障性住房等违反规定或管理不规范问题。
Guest post: China’s unbalanced growth compared with Japan and South Korea | FT Alphaville China may have over-invested in the last few years, but its model has been largely in line with other successful economies for the previous nearly three decades. The same is true for its consumption expenditures growth. Economic commentators should probably focus on the country’s productivity growth instead. As Yukon Huang wrote, “the challenge for the country’s new leadership is pushing forward with reforms that would increase productivity”. China has still a long way to go to catch up with advanced countries in terms of productivity — and that catch-up is essential for its long-term growth prospects.
BUSINESS AND ECONOMY
各地竞报自贸区 广东方案“成形”系乌龙_财经频道_一财网 many cities want a free trade zone like Shanghai, but Beijing may be unlikely to grant any more in the near-term, as will want to first learn from the Shanghai experience, reports First Financial // 多名业内人士认为，中央应该会在上海试点取得一定经验后才会推广到其他地方，短期内扩容的可能性不大。
Regulator Mulls Paving the Way for Private Banks – Caixin The CBRC will issue bankruptcy laws and procedures for banks, as well as an outline for a deposit insurance system, both of which are of utmost importance to the establishment of private banks, as soon as possible, a source from the regulator said. Beijing and Shenzhen may be the first cities to be approved for the pilot program, a source close to the central bank said.
China’s Credit Levels Echo U.S. Crisis – WSJ.com “I don’t know any country that’s seen such a large increase in debt and not gone on to have some form of crisis,” says Mark Williams, chief Asia economist for Capital Economics, an independent research house. He doesn’t think it is imminent in China, and the “crisis” could be years of slow growth, rather than a financial meltdown.
China locks foreign investors out of another bad-debt cleanup | Reuters “Sometimes the door is open for foreigners to come up and make money, and sometimes it’s closed,” said one veteran debt specialist who has bought and sold Chinese debt for global investment banks. He declined to be named due to the sensitivity of discussing China’s sovereign debt. “Our belief right now is that the door is closed.” There is no ban on foreign investors buying up bad loans, but veterans of the 1999-2007 clean-up say the environment is as hostile to outsiders now as it was back then. A decade ago, they played only a limited role due to time-consuming red tape and difficulties enforcing their rights as creditors, such as being able to seize assets pledged as collateral for a soured loan.
解决地方债务：可卖楼、追责“问题债”官员 | 每经网 after the latest debt audit is completed there may be some local government buildings for sale…//核心提示： 有学者尖锐地指出，如果地方债走到市场违约那一步，必须进行严厉问责，而地方政府还债在技术上并不是问题，政府持有的国有资产可以出售，公路收费的收费权也可以卖给别人，“卖楼还债”也是一种手段。
Closer Look: Toward A More Progressive Income Tax – Caixin (Beijing) – Any news on tax reform is good news to the public. The minister of finance, Lou Jiwei, told state media on September 4 that the next step in income tax reform is weighing family burdens, such as dependents and mortgages. Lou’s remarks were highly welcomed by scholars and the public. Although the threshold for income tax has been raised three times in the past few years, the call for more inclusive deductions continues to ring aloud. Tax deductions are a common practice in many mature market economies, and the promised reform would reduce the burden on working-class taxpayers. // and create a market in deduction scams
3,000 villas, but no one’s home: Inside the Jing Jin ghost city | South China Morning Post Hopson Development has invested more than 20 billion yuan in the project, according to Time Weekly . Zhao said at least 1,000 villas had been sold, and the average occupancy rate had grown by 10 to 15 per cent in the past year. But most of the owners were government officials or senior executives, who seldom had time to visit, which lowered the occupancy rate.
POLITICS AND LAW
Charges against Businesswoman Linked to Liu Zhijun Filed in Beijing – Caixin Ding Shumiao, a 58-year-old native of the northern province of Shanxi, was charged in No. 2 Intermediate People’s Court with illegal business operations and paying bribes. Ding, who also went by the name Ding Yuxin, made her fortune in the coal transportation business. She later became the board chairwoman of Beijing Boyou Investment Management Corp. In 2005, the company received several contracts to supply sound barriers for the rapid expansion of the network of high-speed railways spearheaded by Liu.
中石油否认2名高管再遭调查处级以上干部被要求上交因私护照_中国经济网——国家经济门户 PetroChina department heads and above all have to hand over their private passports?
PetroChina says report of more probes ‘inaccurate’, shares rise | Reuters Shares in Chinese oil producer PetroChina Co Ltd rose as much as 1.7 percent when they resumed trade on Monday, after the company said a newspaper report that more of its executives were being investigated was inaccurate.
专家:薛蛮子被拘满15日 轻则将收容教育重则犯罪_网易新闻中心 Charles Xue (Xue Manzi) still in custody after 15 days, could be looking at 6 months or more of re-education
朱镕基新书曾提前印样本向中央领导征求意见_新闻_腾讯网 Zhu Rongji circulated his manuscript to central leaders for comments before publishing the bestseller // 京华时报讯 由人民出版社出版的《朱镕基上海讲话实录》于8月12日向全国发行。昨天，人民出版社常务副社长任超做客中新网时介绍，该书首印110万册全部发出，并已取得65万册的销售佳绩。任超表示，该书出版过程中，朱镕基同志要求实事求是，如实呈现当时的一些情况。
刘云山：关于批评和自我批评的几点认识-高层动态-新华网 text of Liu Yunshan’s September 1 speech at the opening of the Fall session at the Central Party School // 9月1日，中共中央党校举行2013年秋季学期开学典礼，中共中央政治局常委、中央党校校长刘云山出席并讲话。
Correctly deal with the Seven Great Relationships in Ideological Work | China Copyright and Media General Secretary Xi Jinping’s important speech from the National Propaganda and Ideology Work Conference utilized the “dialectics” and the “key theory” of dialectical material, to deeply elaborate the “Seven Great Relationships” of ideological work in the new period, it scientifically responded to a series of major theoretical and real questions for the long-term development of propaganda and ideology work, and hugely removed the perplexion from some time ago in the minds of the broad cadres and personnel on the propaganda front, it is the action plan to guide us to do propaganda and ideology work in the new period well.–(The author is a CCP Heilongjiang Province Committee Standing Committee Member and the Propaganda Department Director) // 正确处理意识形态工作的七大关系
《人民日报》不解圣意 顾此失彼意难平_中国_多维新闻网 同样作为官方喉舌，《学习时报》和新华社则扮演着浇水降温的角色。比如前者的《防民之口甚于防川》，以及后者在各地将打击谣言着力点放在群众身上的关头，提出“打击网络谣言须防执行跑偏”以及事无巨细地盘点了几大“官谣”。意在强调的是，网络谣言固然要打，但执行层面并非十全十美，国家能源局第一时间为刘铁男公开扯谎更是几十倍于一则普通网民的戏说、段子。..事实上，这已经不是《人民日报》第一次有失分寸，此前越界向孙杨、李娜等运动员喊话呼吁别拿个性当令牌、任性要有底线，就曾招惹骂声一片。以《求是》、《红旗文稿》为核心的主流舆论场也不是第一次出现乱局。考虑到“8·19”讲话关涉未来五年的宣传走向，主流舆论场的党报官媒更是连接当局和群众的重要纽带，算的上是“极端重要的工作”。如果一开始就出现类《人民日报》把握不准大局、大势、大事的宣传方式，出现喉舌媒体乱局一片，恐怕随后五年意识形态也消停不得。这厢是主流舆论场顾此失彼的你一言我一语，那厢是扼住老百姓的喉咙不让说话，此态势绝非大辩论时代应有之意。
单仁平：做北大教授，先要通得过校内考核_评论_环球网 The Global Times is not sympathetic with Peking U Professor Xia Yeliang’s plight // 北京大学教授夏业良近日在推特上不断发帖，宣称自己因为“反专制”面临被学校解聘。而据本报了解，目前高校刚刚开学，北大一年一度的教授聘职工作正在进行中，夏去年就未能通过教授岗位考核，他现在“主动出击”，大概是自己心里没底，因而“以攻为守”。
Dissident’s Daughter Flees China in Search of Schooling–RFA 10-year-old girl dubbed “China’s youngest political prisoner” has arrived in the United States after being held under house arrest and denied access to an education back home, fellow activists said. Zhang Anni, daughter of detained veteran dissident Zhang Lin, traveled with friends and family to Shanghai last week to apply for a U.S. visa as a last resort after they were unable to secure a place in school for her during the new academic year. Anni arrived at San Francisco airport alongside her sister Ruli on Saturday
FOREIGN AND DEFENSE AFFAIRS
Guiding Principles of China’s New Foreign Policy-Carnegie-Tsinghua Center The new Chinese administration, led by President Xi Jinping, has made notable changes to the country’s foreign policy agenda. China has begun to play a more active, innovative role in international affairs and has adopted a new global perspective. In a Q&A, Zhao Kejin explains that despite those changes, the core principles guiding the country’s foreign policy remain the same. Beijing’s primary goal of promoting a fair and peaceful international order informs all aspects of the country’s international relations and will shape the future of Chinese foreign policy.
China, U.S. vow to enhance Asia-Pacific military ties – Xinhua Chinese and U.S. defense authorities met in Beijing on Monday, vowing to increase strategic mutual trust and strengthen relations in the Asia-Pacific region. The consultation was co-chaired by Wang Guanzhong, Deputy Chief of General Staff of the Chinese People’s Liberation Army (PLA), and U.S. Under Secretary of Defense for Policy James Miller. Wang said Chinese President Xi Jinping and U.S. President Barack Obama have reached an important consensus on building a new type of relationship between major powers.
China’s ‘Carrier-Killer’ Was Born in the Balkans — War is Boring — Medium In 1999, the U.S. was engaged in an air and missile war with Serbia. As NATO bombs exploded around Belgrade — part of a campaign to force an end to the ethnic cleansing of Kosovar Albanians by Serb forces — several U.S. missiles slammed into the Chinese embassy. It was the most controversial U.S. action of the war. China’s leaders were outraged, but could do little in response. The result? The bombing became a pivotal moment in the decision to pursue a sophisticated weapons project: a ballistic missile that can knock out American aircraft carriers from 1,500+ miles away.
Japan’s war potential and the case of the Izumo ‘destroyer’ | East Asia Forum Japan’s helicopter carriers are, however, extremely useful for Japan’s defence and wellbeing, and not particularly useful for assailing the civilian and military infrastructure of other nations, especially given the military strength of other Northeast Asian states. China is thus likely to be most concerned about the Izumo enhancing Japan’s ability to check Chinese naval power projection into Japan’s maritime defensive perimeter, rather than the possibility of it projecting military power onto the Chinese mainland
Chinese Army to hold military exercise – Xinhua The People’s Liberation Army (PLA) said on Monday it will launch a military exercise, dubbed “Mission Action 2013,” on Tuesday. More than 40,000 soldiers from the Nanjing and Guangzhou military area commands and the Air Force will participate in the drill. The troops are expected to maneuver over 30,000 km by vehicle, railway, sea and air in order to test the capabilities of the PLA in a real war situation, according to military headquarters.
HONG KONG, MACAO AND TAIWAN
Ma Ying-jeou risks splitting Taiwan’s KMT, lawmakers warn | South China Morning Post Taiwanese President Ma Ying-jeou is said to be risking a major rift in his party amid the fallout from alleged influence-peddling that has forced his justice minister to resign. Ma at the weekend accused legislative speaker Wang Jin-pyng, a fellow member of the Kuomintang, of influence-peddling by lobbying former justice minister Tseng Yung-fu not to appeal against the acquittal of prominent opposition lawmaker Ker Chien-ming in a breach-of-trust case.
TECH AND MEDIA
Alibaba Braces for Mobile Revolution – WSJ.com To better prepare for the rise of the mobile Internet, Alibaba has been trying to gain control over key mobile services and technologies—be it mapping, social media or operating systems—to lure smartphone users to its marketplaces. It has spent about $1 billion in the past several months to buy stakes in an array of services…Alibaba is also promoting its own smartphone operating system, giving subsidies to handset makers using the Alibaba Mobile OS and funding app development. That strategy has faced a setback, however. A year ago, Google objected to the release of an Alibaba OS-based smartphone by Acer Inc.—a member of the Google-led Open Handset Alliance—saying that the Taiwanese computer maker couldn’t work with a noncompatible version of Android. Alibaba rejected the view that its OS was an Android variant, but the Acer phone was never released. // “rejected the view”?
Report: Xiaomi is developing its own mobile OS–TechInAsia Chinese tech media sites are reporting that according to an informed source, Xiaomi has an internal team that has been working on a mobile operating system since last April. Supposedly, the operating system — which will be called MIOS — will be based mostly on the Linux kernel. It’s actually designed as a virtual OS based inside a browser that allows users to run various apps within the browser. It’s not finished yet, but the company is apparently hoping to launch it along with the Mi4 handset, which past history tells us will be launched sometime in September 2014.
SOCIETY, ART, SPORTS, CULTURE AND HISTORY
毛主席永远活在我们心中_唐大柏_博联社 Pictures of commemoration of yesterday’s 37th anniversary of Mao’s death, from Hunan
ENERGY, ENVIRONMENT, SCIENCE AND HEALTH
Peak coal in China | | MacroBusiness Citibank has an impressive note out on the future of Chinese coal usage and the news for Australia is good and bad. Good because carbon emissions are going to fall. Bad because our coal exports face a lot more potential downside: // anyone have the full report they can share?
Shandong companies cleared of pollution allegations|Society|chinadaily.com.cn The environmental protection department took to Sina Weibo last week and required Deng Fei, who reposted messages by whistleblowers, to make an apology to the enterprises on the list. The two parties later exchanged views on Weibo and agreed that a mechanism is needed to enhance the interaction between the public and government departments. Deng told the Beijing News last week that it is impossible to rely on reports made by netizens to be 100 percent accurate. Deng, who earlier demanded that the authority publish details of the investigation, said the efforts of the authority in communicating with the public over issues of public concern set an example for other government micro blogs.
New nano-tech could treat China’s lake pollution – Xinhua Scientists with the Chinese University of Science and Technology said on Monday that their laboratory tests had showed a single gram of the new nanomaterial that can kill algae floating in an area equal in size to a basketball court. Fan Chongzheng, who led the research, said that the catalyzer leads to a biodegradation of the algae into an inorganic earthenlike substance. He added that lab tests were conducted on water covered with a density of algae of over 100 million particles per liter. The water of Chaoku Lake, home to the most serious algae pollution among China’s major lakes, is covered with a density of algae of over 5 million particles per liter.
FOOD AND TRAVEL
Thailand to Scrap Luxury-Goods Tax to Lure China Travelers – Bloomberg The duty on some luxury goods will be cut to zero from 30 percent by the end of the year, Permanent Secretary for Finance Areepong Bhoocha-Oom told reporters in Chonburi province. Thailand’s SET Index jumped 3.6 percent, as Minor (MINT) International Pcl led gains among tourism-related stocks on optimism the tax reduction will boost travel demand.
北京：男子四环主路上持棍连砸3辆警车(图)_资讯频道_凤凰网 man w club smashes 3 police cars on Beijing’s 4th ring road before being detained…pictures…and yesterday a woman climbed a light pole near CBD and threatened to jump, saw it driving by, picture here, do not know if she is OK. a lot of angry and unhappy people, thankfully there is gun control here…
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