China to strengthen management of short videos to prevent addiction among minors
Published: Feb 27, 2023 10:20 PM
online games Photo: VCG

online games Photo: VCG

The National Radio and Television Administration (NRTA) will strengthen management of short online videos, aiming to prevent minors from becoming addicted, it said on Monday. 

According to a notice on the NRTA's official website, a meeting on strengthening the management of short videos was held on February 22, which vowed to create a clear space for short videos, improve the protection for minors, and use short videos to positively guide minors. 

The authorities will step up measures targeting aspects such as content creation and algorithm management. 

The strengthened management aims to promote the healthy development of short videos and achieve quality improvement and upgrading, while creating a more favorable and healthy environment for minors. 

Major domestic short-video platforms including Douyin and Kuaishou launched a mode specifically targeting minors under the guidance of the Cyberspace Administration of China in March 2019. The mode imposes restrictions for minors' usage from online time to service functions.  

The strengthened management shows that the nation's supervision of relevant sectors has shifted to a regular management phase, with a more mature regulation system gradually being formed, Liu Dingding, a Beijing-based independent tech analyst, told the Global Times on Monday.

According to a report issued by China Youth & Children Research Center, some 65.6 percent of the surveyed minors watch short-videos, while 20 percent of minors said that they "always" watch short videos, China Youth Daily reported.   

Data from the China Internet Network Information Center showed that as of June 2022, the number of users of China's short-video products reached 962 million, accounting for 91.5 percent of the number of total internet users, while users under the age of 19 reached 186 million, accounting for 17.7 percent of the total users.  

In addition to short videos, the authorities have ramped up efforts to prevent minors from becoming addicted to online games as well.

China's National Press and Publication Administration, which is in charge of licensing video games in China, released a notice in August 2021 requiring online game providers to offer only one-hour services to minors from 8 pm to 9 pm on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays, as well as on official holidays, aiming to prevent online gaming addiction among minors.