On March 26, 2012, state media Huanqiu published a commentary in an attempt to quash Internet postings about friction among the top Communist Party leaders. “Recently, certain rumors have been spreading on and off the Internet, with high visibility. Some of them even involve Changan Street (the location of the Chinese State Council) and Zhongnanhai (the headquarters of the Communist Party). These rumors are very bizarre and ridiculous, thus interfering with public opinion. Chinese society should be on the alert about this and should not let the rumor mill run without restrictions.” The commentary alleged that the rumors are quietly eroding society. “[To legitimize rumors] is, in fact, to build a publicly-accepted world outside of the current political framework and to constantly erode the authority of the current system. Once rumors are legitimized, they will become a cheap tool to disintegrate the country ideologically and politically.”
Source: Huanqiu, March 26, 2012.