It is propaganda, obviously, putting over a message that the establishment/state wants to enter into the mind of the masses. In shorthand:
"If you are disobedient you will be denigrated, punished and ostracised by the group"
Many apparently different messages actually send that self same message in a wide variety of different countries; China is far from unique in this.
Socio-political control is the same as religious-social control ... It is all about control. Both carry a set of rules proposed by those in power to control the masses. A set of rules along with the message "If you digress you will be caught ... we the controllers of your life are omnipresent. We are on your TV, your bus journey, your train, your street, everywhere ... You cannot escape our gaze and so must comply for a peaceful and safe existence ... If you do not comply you are an enemy of the state and every other citizen"
This of course has all been around since our species found the cancer which is 'society'. In historical terms it was just a second ago that the NSDAP 3rd Reich of Germany, 1933-1945, mostly via the machinations of Dr P Joseph Goebbels ..... created modern propaganda.
Goebbels, a Dr of Philosophy, grasped from the later 1920's the strength of a constant message, a simple idea, repeated endlessly. He was well aware the public will always gratefully swallow a simple lie over a complex truth/fact.
The NSDAP therefore adopted black, red and white as the colours they used .... everywhere. Their posters were always BRW, the uniforms of the their political forces, BRW ... their flag, BRW and so forth. Every time therefore someone saw BRW, they thought of the NSDAP. It is a deeply pervasive idea which works perfectly on the masses.
When Hitler was campaigning in late 1932, Goebbels put him on a plane and there was an exhausting schedule flying around Germany in a random pattern to give the impression Hitler was everywhere ... Omnipresent.
Once they had ceased power via the Enabling Act March 1933, Goebbels had a 'state radio' constructed for the masses to have in their homes. A radio which was designed to be so weak in reception terms that it could only pick up local signals ... meaning no external news.
From 1933 Goebbels controlled all media
; cinema, books, newspapers, the arts, teaching etc etc. Sometimes he would agonise all day on which word should be used in a headline to best convey his message.
The most concerning thing of course is that none of this really works without the compliance of the vast majority. The 3rd Reich had for example it's 'Block managers', some eager to please type who would report anyone for anything. In the former E Germany, the Stasi secret police ended up employing 1 in 6 of the population as informers.
When you cannot trust anyone all you can do is report others before they report you ...... even your own family members.
No doubt on here someone will feel forced to post '1984!!' and little else, feeling they have made some deeply erudite comment .... they haven't.
1984 is an interesting book for sure. It carries all the main themes of modern propaganda. Possibly the most interesting and pertinent thing to life today in 1984 is 'Newspeak', the official language which has very few words, the minimum possible. Why? Because the less vocabulary someone has, the less they can think of new ideas or question ideas they are presented with. This is physical world clinically researched and proven.
So the more people are fed an idea, the more they feel there is no escape from the gaze of the establishment then the more they feel the need to fit in from either fear or desire ..... The lower in their educational attainment and access to vocabulary,the earlier in life that message can be fed into them, the more pronounced the effect.