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Tuesday, March 21, 2023

China takes action against entertainment industry – “Softened Aesthetics”

The Chinese authorities have stepped up crackdown on the entertainment industry.

Broadcasters were instructed on Thursday to ban artists with “incorrect political positions” from programming. A “patriotic atmosphere” must be cultivated, as the National Radio and Television Authority (NRTA) announced. The regulation of cultural programs will be tightened. Action is taken against content that is perceived as unhealthy as well as against high salaries of the stars and tax evasion.

This is part of a whole series of measures that the authorities are taking to tighten their oversight of many industries – from technology to education. This is intended to strengthen control over the economy and society after years of rapid growth. This week, for example, new rules were introduced according to which under 18-year-olds are only allowed to spend one hour playing online games every Friday as well as on weekends and holidays. The supervisors reacted to growing concerns that more and more young people could develop a gambling addiction, it was said to justify.

The entertainment industry has recently been targeted after a series of tax evasion and sexual assault scandals. Last week, the Internet regulator announced that it would take action against the “chaotic” fan culture of celebrities. The NRTA, in turn, has now announced regulations to limit the fees for actors. They should also be encouraged to take part in welfare programs and to take on more social responsibility. Tax evasion should be punished severely.


The selection of actors and guests in the channels should also be carefully controlled. Political education and moral behavior are therefore considered criteria. The “deformed” taste as well as an “effeminate” aesthetic in the programs should be ended. Conversation with “vulgar” Internet stars and the display of wealth should be rejected. Hard action must also be taken against an unhealthy fan culture. Encouraging fans to spend money voting on television channels should be strictly prohibited.

China censors everything that the government believes violates fundamental socialist values. Authorities and state media have been calling for boys to become more masculine in recent months. At the same time, male stars were criticized who put on heavy make-up and thus convey a feminine image.

The market economy reforms initiated four decades ago have made the People’s Republic the world export champion and the second largest economy after the USA. There are now hundreds of billionaires and thousands of millionaires in the socialist country, which has deepened inequality. China’s Communist Party is now pushing for top-down redistribution. The fight against inequality and for “shared prosperity” is not about “killing the rich to help the poor,” said Han Wenxiu of the influential Commission for Financial and Economic Affairs recently. But those who got rich first should help those who have remained behind.

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