According to Voice of American, Chinese hackers recently claimed that they had hacked into the databases of the Shanghai and Chongqing Communist Youth League (CYL) organizations on May 25, 2015. They exposed that the Chinese CYL Central Committee requires colleges and universities in different locations to organize Internet propaganda teams. The hackers released statistical information on different activities, the personal information of the Internet propagandists, instructions from their superiors, audio files of meetings, and other documents. A “Report on Public Opinion on the Internet” from Donghua University on April 4th of this year contained instructions on what to post on the Internet on an extensive number of subjects, including military, political, and commercial topics. Shanghai University requires that Internet propagandists (who are also called the “Fifty Cent Party” because they are paid 50 cents per post and receive 600 yuan per month as a base stipend) monitor and follow students’ thought processes and group activities during the period of the anniversary of the June 4th Tiananmen Square Massacre.
Reports indicate that Mainland China has nearly 650 million Internet users. According to Ming Pao on April 6, 2015, the CYL Central Committee has decided to recruit 10.5 million Internet youth propagandists, mainly from colleges and universities. The allocated quota is 100 Internet propagandists from the Shenzhen Campus of Hong Kong University and as high as 9,000 propagandists from Zhongshan University in Guangzhou.
Source: Voice of America, May 25, 2015
http://www.voachinese.com/content/article-20110808-world-press-coverage-on-china-127268478/785852.html (Introduction on Fifty Cent Party)