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Regulation pares "racy" TV programs

01-05-2012 10:26 BJT

By Cao Yin

BEIJING, Jan. 05 (Xinhuanet) -- China's satellite television channels have aired fewer entertainment programs this year as broadcasting watchdog's curbs on "excessive entertainment" took effect.

The State Administration of Radio, Film and Television has cut two-thirds of "racy" entertainment programs on China's 34 satellite channels since the campaign began, the spokesperson for the administration said on Tuesday.

Since the regulation took effect on Jan 1, the total number of entertainment programs scheduled for prime-time -7:30 pm to 10 pm - broadcast a week dropped to 38 from 126 at the end of last year, according to a statement from the administration.

Under the regulation, announced in October, each satellite channel can broadcast no more than two entertainment programs a week and the maximum length of the program may not exceed 90 minutes.

The targeted programs, including dating shows, reality talent shows and emotional stories on the administration's list, were deemed "excessive entertainment" and showing "less taste".

"Satellite channels should design programs with innovative content, promoting traditional virtues and socialist core values in their new entertainment programs," the authority said.

The administration considers the move crucial to improving cultural content for the public by offering high-level programs.

Meanwhile, the number of news programs on the satellite channels has grown to 193 a day, 33 percent more than in 2011.

Currently, news programming on each satellite channel has surpassed two hours, and each channel has at least two 30-minute news programs during prime time.

But popular dating shows such as If You Are the One, produced by Jiangsu Satellite TV, and reality shows such as China's Got Talent, aired by Shanghai-based Dragon TV, will remain on during prime time in the weekend.

Li Hao, spokesman for Hunan Satellite TV, a broadcaster famous for its entertainment programs, told China Daily the regulation will improve the quality of entertainment programs.

"We have been exploring how to make entertainment shows more meaningful and valuable," he said, adding that the channel has shortened the length of its two entertainment programs from 110 to 90 minutes.

"We will supervise programs more strictly, and pay close attention to things such as the clothing and comments of hosts and guests," he added.

Cheng Manli, a media professor at Peking University, welcomed the new regulation to limit "less tasteful" programs involving violence and money worship.

"After all, unhealthy programs may hurt young people who are not able to distinguish right from wrong, which also worries their parents," she said.

However, Yu Guoming, a professor at the School of Journalism at Renmin University of China, did not think the regulation was the way to improve cultural development.

"Whether the entertainment program is good or not should be decided by viewers' reaction, instead of an administration's evaluation," he said. "Residents are under pressure and need to watch shows to relax in our society."

Yu also said that a good entertainment program should respect residents' taste and give them more viewing choices, or else it could lead to rigid restrictions.

Ma Yuqiang, who runs an online clothing retail company, said the new rule will not affect his daily life, because he can watch the entertainment programs that were taken off prime time on the Internet.

"I think the regulation will drive most young people to the Internet," Ma, 26, said.

Editor:Zhang Hao |Source: Xinhua

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