Digital Transformation

China bans foreign companies from digitally publishing ‘texts, pictures, maps, games, animations, audios, and videos’

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By John McCarthy | Media editor

February 20, 2016 | 3 min read

China has seemingly censored foreign media outlets from publishing almost every conceivable form of content without approval from the state.

China’s Ministry of Industry and Information Technology has issued a new directive blocking foreign media companies from publishing a host of digital content.

The directive reads: “Sino-foreign joint ventures, Sino-foreign cooperative ventures, and foreign business units shall not engage in online publishing services [of] texts, pictures, maps, games, animations, audios, and videos,” without approval State Administration of Press, Publication, Radio, Film and Television (SARFT).

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The initiative gives the Chinese government greater control of foreign media outlets tied up in the country with the new legislation effectively hamstringing their ability to operate in the region.

Affecting companies as broad as news outlet Reuters, Facebook, PlayStation and Xbox One, China has thrown up another roadblock hindering companies looking to market to its 700m citizens.

Quartz reports that the new legislation may be ineffective at closing the door to foreign companies, claiming it is actually the State Internet Information Office that generates the country’s internet policies.

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