A new directive from China’s broadcast and web regulators will have internet video providers prescreening programs including drama series and mini-movies, before they are posted, The Associated Press reports. The move further increases state censorship in a nation that already limits what the public can see on any type of screen. SARFT issued a statement this week targeting online programming that contains offensive content including pornography and excessive violence. No specific standards or penalties were outlined, but the watchdog said content providers will be held responsible for what they post. The directive was issued based on requests from the public who believe such content has had a negative impact on the mental health of young people and the development of online content providers, according to Xinhuanet.com. Following the decree, shares of online video companies Youku and Tudou fell on Wednesday, Reuters said. But a Youku worker told The AP that the new rules wouldn’t have much impact on its practices since the company already prescreens all content before uploading. “Nothing with vulgar or violent materials will pass,” the person said.
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