Media regulator bans lewd content

By Cao Siqi Source:Global Times Published: 2014-11-13 0:58:05

A circular by China's top media and television watchdog requiring content providers to cut content related to one-night stands, sexual abuse and extramarital affairs from video streaming websites has sparked heated discussion.

According to a report by entertainment news website, the State Administration of Press, Publication, Radio, Film and Television (SAPPRFT) circular stipulated that programs depicting extramarital affairs, polyamorous relationship, one-night stands, sexual abuse, or containing pornographic content should be cut or deleted.

It also said that video depicting rape, fornication, necrophilia, prostitution or masturbation also should be cut.

Video websites are required to remove headlines with text or pictures referring to sex and nudity. Plots depicting violent murder, suicides, kidnapping, drug abuse, gambling or supernatural occurrences should be cut.

SAPPRFT said that websites should closely examine videos with tags like "hot dancing," "beauties" and "originals."

A great deal of sexually suggestive content is likely to be taken down, reported news portal

"Media regulators used to have loose regulations on [these] programs, so that the public is often exposed to contents related to sex, violence and murder," Tan Tian, a professor at Jinan University, told the Global Times on Wednesday.

He added that SAPPRFT should issue a regulation removing porn and other vulgar content from those websites.

However, many Web users claimed that after implementing this regulation, Chinese audience will have no films or dramas to watch.

Tan warned authorities against being overly extreme, saying it might hinder the creation of more excellent works.

He suggested that the regulator provide a detailed explanation on how the new circular should be implemented. SARFT, the predecessor to SAPPRFT, issued a similar notice in 2009.

Zhuang Xihai, a former TV host and a producer who is now a professor at the Southwest University of Broadcasting in Chongqing, told the Global Times that the fact that SAPPRFT issuing of a similar notice showed that the first notice was not implemented effectively.

Zhuang added that he does not think it would prove a deathblow for streaming websites, instead calling it a new opportunity for both websites and creators to produce more positive works.

The moves come after a new governmental campaign against pornography and vulgar content entitled "Cleaning the Web 2014" by State Internet Information Office.

In April, China has shut down 110 websites as part of a national crackdown on online pornography, according to the office.

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