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China Cuts 'Excessive Entertainment' From TV

samzenpus posted more than 2 years ago | from the not-too-much dept.

Television 336

An anonymous reader writes "Chinese broadcasters have axed two-thirds of popular TV shows in line with a government directive to curb 'excessive entertainment.' From the article: 'The rule, first announced in October, is targeted at what Chinese regulators have called "excessive entertainment and a trend toward low taste," to address the rise of talent shows, dating shows and other such programming aired by China's tightly regulated, but increasingly competitive, regional satellite broadcasters. Authorities also encouraged broadcasters to air more news and educational programming.' according to local media reports."

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So, China wants to drive web use over TV? (2, Interesting)

jcr (53032) | more than 2 years ago | (#38593360)

If the viewers can't find what they want on the tube, they'll get it somewhere else.

-jcr

Re:So, China wants to drive web use over TV? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38593458)

Their internet is even more restricted than what thier tv is going to be

That's true (4, Informative)

KuRa_Scvls (932317) | more than 2 years ago | (#38593500)

They are finding it from foreign sources.

Especially from its immediate neighbours such as Taiwan, Japan, and South Korea.

Taiwan much more so as they speak the same language as mainland, yet are progressive and mirror the mindset of the first world countries, or the west.

Re:That's true (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38593542)

That's true of geeks, but I wonder how true it is of most Chinese. We shouldn't underestimate how much the government can shift media consumption patterns by making access more difficult.

Re:That's true (2)

msobkow (48369) | more than 2 years ago | (#38593716)

You seriously underestimate the spread of technology in China.

Re:That's true (5, Interesting)

wisty (1335733) | more than 2 years ago | (#38594062)

Funny story - the spread of technology in China is almost guaranteed to topple the idiots running North Korea. Firstly, it's made most Chinese despise the North Korean government, which makes the Chinese - North Korean alliance a bit of a farce. Everyone except North Korea (who think China is still their friend) knows that China's only concern now is whether or not it suffer any collateral damage (i.e. bombs, shells, or fallout falling on Chinese soil), and how to deal with the refugees.

More importantly, North Koreans buy black-market goods from China. This includes iPod clones, many of which will come sold pre-loaded with the best Korean entertainment videos, all of which come from South Korea. It's getting harder and harder to explain that they are so superior, when all the South Korean shows are about families which are 10X richer than the families shown in pro-North propaganda.

Re:That's true (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38593848)

I'm a Chinese, I really hate those shows. You have no idea how many prostitutes are there on the dating shows.

just lost my password.

All power to China (2, Interesting)

Taco Cowboy (5327) | more than 2 years ago | (#38593528)

Excessive entertainment over the tube is one of the lead causes of the downfall of the Western nations.

Turn on the tube if you don't believe me, flip some channels, see how many of the programs are of any value in the first place?

No wonder over 90% of the American high school graduates can't even pinpoint their own country - the United States of America - on the world map.

They have been dumbed down by the entertainment industry.

Re:All power to China (5, Insightful)

MattBecker82 (1686358) | more than 2 years ago | (#38593638)

No wonder over 500% of Slashdot users post hyperbole without anything to back it up.

Seriously, I don't know if you're joking or not, but your post is just false premises, non-sequiturs and made-up "facts". Analysis:

Excessive entertainment over the tube is one of the lead causes of the downfall of the Western nations.

You need to establish the premise of "the downfall of the Western nations" (whatever that means), then establish a cause-and-effect relationship between "excessive entertainment over the tube" and the former.

Turn on the tube if you don't believe me, flip some channels, see how many of the programs are of any value in the first place?

How are you establishing the "value" of TV programs exactly? By your own judgement as whether it's something you'd like to watch?

No wonder over 90% of the American high school graduates can't even pinpoint their own country - the United States of America - on the world map.

Citation needed. Or an admission that you just made this up.

They have been dumbed down by the entertainment industry.

Non-sequitur. Even if you establish two concurrent trends, it doesn't mean there is a connection or cause-and-effect relationship between them. [wikipedia.org]

Re:All power to China (1, Interesting)

dokc (1562391) | more than 2 years ago | (#38593738)

Maybe he doesn't support with links what he claims, but he is nevertheless right. We are all dumbed down by the entertainment industry.

Re:All power to China (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38593952)

Not so, Only people who are already dumb watch this crap

Re:All power to China (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38594066)

most people are sheep, if sheep watch dumb stuff, they get dumber, if sheep watch educational stuff they get smarter.

The U.S. government already regulates what you can eat by banning or cutting back on bad for you foods (banning fast food places in ghetto's, getting rid of trans-fats etc..), why not regulate bad for you television. As much as it goes against freedom and democracy this actually sounds like a really wonderful idea.

Re:All power to China (4, Insightful)

MattBecker82 (1686358) | more than 2 years ago | (#38594002)

I'm not looking for watertight scientific proof, but the GGP makes an extraordinary claim (i.e. that excess of "entertainment" TV shows causes the downfall of Western nations), and indeed it's possible this is right, just as it's possible the world is run by a secret society of reptilian fascists [wikipedia.org] . However, the GGP presents it as fact, and with no supporting evidence and only an illogical argument and further extraordinary claims to back it up, I see no reason to accept the claim.

If he had presented it as opinion (which it is), and had omitted the ridiculous reference to the level of geography fail among US high school grads, then I wouldn't have had any cause to challenge it.

Re:All power to China (1)

Samantha Wright (1324923) | more than 2 years ago | (#38594048)

Hey, go easy on the Ickemeister! He's the only author other than Hitler to ever be banned from Canada's book monopoly's shelves. You know what they say; schizophrenia is the best fantasy.

Re:All power to China (2)

hairyfish (1653411) | more than 2 years ago | (#38594014)

Maybe he doesn't support with links what he claims, but he is nevertheless right. We are all dumbed down by the entertainment industry.

Perhaps if you watched Discovery instead of MTV, you'd be aware of the Flynn Effect

Re:All power to China (1)

hairyfish (1653411) | more than 2 years ago | (#38594028)

Flynn Effect [discovery.com] (Link didn't work the first time)

Re:All power to China (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38594032)

Any person watching 3 minutes of Jerry Springer would come to the original conclusion. No citation is needed to prove gravity works.

You would think so, but not so much (5, Interesting)

pablo_max (626328) | more than 2 years ago | (#38593596)

There are several online services which offer loads of pirated TV shows and even movies. For example, my wife uses a streaming program called funsion to watch HIMYM, Big Bang and other popular American TV shows.
As of yesterday, those show are no longer available. This was also the case on the two other alternative services.
Granted, one can use a VPN tunnel, but most people will not be willing to pay money for a VPN which is fast enough to stream.
I do happen to pay for premium VPN services, but as I was last in China, it was impressively slow. Enough for real google results and such, but not enough for netflix.

Re:So, China wants to drive web use over TV? (1)

Urkki (668283) | more than 2 years ago | (#38593708)

If the viewers can't find what they want on the tube, they'll get it somewhere else.

-jcr

Some of them will. Majority will just channel surf and watch the most bearable programmes they find.

Re:So, China wants to drive web use over TV? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38593796)

Nope... People who use TV are typically dumb(i am not talking about specifically breed of internet users who ocasionally use TV or older folks). So even if they go online for entertainment - will give benefit. Good move China!

Re:So, China wants to drive web use over TV? (1)

Serpents (1831432) | more than 2 years ago | (#38593876)

And nothing of value was lost? Frankly, I'd love to see the TV stations where I live to kill 2/3 of the reality/talent shows and replace them with something worthwhile. When I was a kid, the national TV (2 channels at that time) had several science programs targeted at kids and teenagers. Now we have access several hundred national and private TV channels and not a single show which would try to explain how lasers work to a 10 year old but plenty of the "pew pew pew KABOOM!" variety...

Re:So, China wants to drive web use over TV? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38593988)

If the viewers can't find what they want on the tube, they'll get it somewhere else.

-jcr

But they cant so and any how the Chinese Government have got it bang on it's about time that a good 80% of the crap on the TV world wide was put exactly where it should be in the incinerator . There is way too much so called entertainment these days full of overpaid tossers tossing around not interesting not funny if fact boring

Re:So, China wants to drive web use over TV? (2)

CheerfulMacFanboy (1900788) | more than 2 years ago | (#38594078)

If the viewers can't find what they want on the tube, they'll get it somewhere else.

-jcr

If Chinese Idol isn't produced, they will be hard pressed to find it. And no, American Idol will not be a suitable replacement - after all Americans aren't watching the original either. Every country wants their own asshole judges and overconfident, untalented contestants. And hardly anyone cares about the winners for that matter.

Its hard for me to critisize this move. (5, Insightful)

Narcocide (102829) | more than 2 years ago | (#38593366)

If I had my own country, I would make reality TV illegal too.

Re:Its hard for me to critisize this move. (3, Funny)

chilvence (1210312) | more than 2 years ago | (#38593506)

I was going to say, if only we would legislate the x factor out of existence too... good on the chinese for using authoritarian government for good.

Re:Its hard for me to critisize this move. (2)

Zibodiz (2160038) | more than 2 years ago | (#38593572)

Can you please run for president?

Re:Its hard for me to critisize this move. (5, Insightful)

msobkow (48369) | more than 2 years ago | (#38593726)

You have the right to hate any show you don't like and refuse to watch it. You don't have the right to tell other people what they like.

Re:Its hard for me to critisize this move. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38594008)

He would have that right if he was put in a position of power in a fair election, having made it clear in advance that this was one of his policies.

Re:Its hard for me to critisize this move. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38594010)

Really; no shit Sherlock. Clearly though, he would have this right if he had his own country.

Re:Its hard for me to critisize this move. (5, Interesting)

aztektum (170569) | more than 2 years ago | (#38594020)

Are people actually choosing to like reality TV?

Or are they choosing to simply watch what the media companies offer?

Re:Its hard for me to critisize this move. (1)

DNS-and-BIND (461968) | more than 2 years ago | (#38594044)

Yeah, but when other people are clearly making a mistake, it's our duty (the smart people) to correct them. It's for their own good. China's smart people (the engineers and scientists who make up their government) have made a hard decision regarding their stewardship of the vast number of mouthbreathing hicks in China. These hillbillies don't need to watch so much damn TV, and the decision has been made.

Re:Its hard for me to critisize this move. (0)

dokc (1562391) | more than 2 years ago | (#38593748)

If I had my own country, I would make reality TV illegal too.

Amen!

Re:Its hard for me to critisize this move. (4, Insightful)

Quiet_Desperation (858215) | more than 2 years ago | (#38593836)

I don't like reality TV, either.

However, I'd personally lead the rebel army that took down your fascist ass. :-)

Yes, concerning, free speech, etc (4, Interesting)

ifiwereasculptor (1870574) | more than 2 years ago | (#38593370)

But after being pestered by so many Big Brothers and other related horrors, it's very hard for me to frown upon the chinese here.

Re:Yes, concerning, free speech, etc (1)

gl4ss (559668) | more than 2 years ago | (#38593386)

it's also about keeping viewers on governmentally administered channels(by axing competing shows on less controlled channels, though one could argue that they're all pretty controlled since they can do that).

Re:Yes, concerning, free speech, etc (0, Troll)

rtb61 (674572) | more than 2 years ago | (#38593480)

It's about controlling what appears upon a public asset. Whilst other countries auction off bandwidth to the highest bidder, the 1%, forever squeezing out the little man, the 99% and the leave the censorship of what will and what wont appear to the 1%. So whose news is censored most the US news (in favour of the 1% and corrupt politicians) of China news (in favour of their 1% who happen to be rich autocratic politicians). The only real difference there is the US 1% outsource their corrupt politicians under the capitalist system.

I seem to remember free to air being of much better quality when it 'was' more tightly controlled. Deregulation, it's about higher profits not better quality.

Re:Yes, concerning, free speech, etc (1)

tsotha (720379) | more than 2 years ago | (#38593740)

So there's a dearth of satellite bandwidth, is there?

Re:Yes, concerning, free speech, etc (1)

mehrotra.akash (1539473) | more than 2 years ago | (#38593770)

So there's a dearth of satellite bandwidth, is there?

Actually in some parts of the world, there is a shortage

Re:Yes, concerning, free speech, etc (2)

siddesu (698447) | more than 2 years ago | (#38593548)

This time around it doesn't look like a free speech issue, but more like a preparation for succession issue. The current leadership in China is already old (this is the Deng cohort, pres. Hu is already 70), and he seem to be getting China ready for a new generation of political leaders. When you do leadership change in this kind of regime, you do everything to ensure smooth succession to the people you chose.

There was even an old Soviet joke about the perils of transition. If memory serves, Radio Yerevan was asked "What is bloody sex?". "Pulling out a member from the Politbureau", replied the radio.

Without a smooth translation, the situation in China could get much more unpleasant than that.

Right because if one place does it it is ok (-1)

Sycraft-fu (314770) | more than 2 years ago | (#38593662)

Seriously I get real tired of the America basing some people feel the need to do whenever anything about another country comes up. Three things to keep in mind:

1) Just because America has done something similar to Country_X doesn't mean it is at all the same level. In this case I've seen nothing even remotely close in America.

2) Not everyone on the Internet lives in America. Maybe they are interested in news about other countries, ever think of that? Stop trying to steer everything back to your country. There are plenty of discussions on /. about the shit that happens in America. Don't hijack others.

3) The really important one: Just because something bad happens somewhere doesn't mean you can't criticize it elsewhere! A bad thing happening somewhere doesn't give open license for it to happen all over. Yes, a lot of countries like Iran, North Korea, China, etc torture their captives. However I can damn well criticize the US when they do it too.

So please, knock this crap off. It is silly and pointless.

Re:Right because if one place does it it is ok (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38593846)

Difference is, America takes every-fucking-opportunity to say how great they are, that they value freedom and liberty, the "greatest country" in the world. Those hypocrites deserve all of it and more.

Re:Right because if one place does it it is ok (4, Insightful)

KazW (1136177) | more than 2 years ago | (#38593860)

Seriously I get real tired of the America basing some people feel the need to do whenever anything about another country comes up...

2) Not everyone on the Internet lives in America. Maybe they are interested in news about other countries, ever think of that? Stop trying to steer everything back to your country. There are plenty of discussions on /. about the shit that happens in America. Don't hijack others.

You do realize the GP didn't mention America at all in his comment, don't you? It was only you who mentioned America. In essence, you're doing exactly what you said shouldn't be done.

I'm Canadian, and I had a similar sentiment as the GP. I think _you_ should stop steering the discussion towards America.

Re:Right because if one place does it it is ok (1)

Quiet_Desperation (858215) | more than 2 years ago | (#38593938)

I just love hearing how awful popular entertainment is from people who buy Space 1999 on Blu-Ray, think Firefly was the pinnacle of western civilization, and just never seem to get tired of zombie shows and films.

Re:Yes, concerning, free speech, etc (2)

AmonTheMetalhead (1277044) | more than 2 years ago | (#38593714)

I quit watching TV altogether ages ago, too much commercials for shit I don't want and far too few things actually worth watching. I'll buy/download the things I want to watch and I'll watch when where & how I want.

Re:Yes, concerning, free speech, etc (1)

KuRa_Scvls (932317) | more than 2 years ago | (#38593744)

You want the whole genre to disappear or censored because of bad examples?

Think of it like this.

You might have grown tired of SNL and other sketch shows over the years, but The Daily Show and The Colbert Report are in the same genre, Variety.

Re:Yes, concerning, free speech, etc (1)

jandersen (462034) | more than 2 years ago | (#38593784)

Funny enough, my first thought was "if only they'd do that here". I have almost stopped watching tv, because there is almost no factual programs, and the ones there are, are mostly rehashes of old "nature themes" with added soundtrack.

It would be really nice if they went for less "wow, awesome" and more insight and real knowledge.

Big whoop (3, Interesting)

Osgeld (1900440) | more than 2 years ago | (#38593382)

just go without cable and save yourself 100 bucks a month

Re:Big whoop (4, Interesting)

DanielRavenNest (107550) | more than 2 years ago | (#38593578)

I tried to do that last month, because I had sold my big screen TV, there being nothing but crap on basic cable any more. Instead Comcast made me a 6 month deal to pay less for internet, and still keep TV service, even though I have no way to watch it. My bill is $20 a month less, so I really don't care how they split it, but it's interesting how hard they tried to keep me on TV service. I wonder if they get paid by advertisers according to audience as measured by subscriptions? Then it doesn't actually matter if I don't watch.

Re:Big whoop (2)

tsotha (720379) | more than 2 years ago | (#38593766)

The cable company has to pay for some channels (They pay a lot for ESPN), for some no money changes hands (the legacy networks, I think), and some pay the cable company (HSN). So yeah, that's exactly what's happening. If you're on the lowest tier they make money by having you as a customer (neglecting sunk costs) even if you don't pay.

I won't blame them for that ! (1)

yvesdandoy (44789) | more than 2 years ago | (#38593418)

TV programs have become so incedibly ridiculous and debilous that the only station I watch is ARTE (France-Germany-Belgium publicly funded with NO audience level as a goal !)

Sometimes... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38593434)

Despite the slippery slope argument, I am in complete favor of some forms of censorship. Go China.

Although... the lack of programming designed to actively destroy intelligent thought will probably accelerate their rise to global dominance.. Hrm...Time to learn Mandarin.

Thank you! (1, Redundant)

DWMorse (1816016) | more than 2 years ago | (#38593438)

Thank you, China, for the excessively entertaining action!

FCC Should take note (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38593442)

I hate to say it but I kindof wish something like that would happen here, lame reality shows and crime drama's and celebrity gossip is 80% of OTA terrestrial broadcasting here in the US now. I don't know how anyone half intelligent could stand to watch most of whats on TV these days. I'll stick with my anime and AJE/msnbc/pbs/yt/esports web streaming. While I do think government policing of content of any kind is a bad thing, in this case maybe it's not so bad (cutting back on "dumb" stuff).

Re:FCC Should take note (5, Insightful)

kelarius (947816) | more than 2 years ago | (#38593488)

TV doesn't make people stupid, it just keeps stupid people entertained and out of the public eye, so why is excessively entertaining media a bad thing?

Personally I'd rather have my idiots at home glued to the TV than out doing idiotic things...

Re:FCC Should take note (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38593970)

Personally I'd rather have my idiots at home glued to the TV than out doing idiotic things...

Oh man, that made my day. Bravo

No X-factor??? (1)

spectrokid (660550) | more than 2 years ago | (#38593460)

A country where stupid politicians don't try to learn dancing salsa on TV? Count me in!!!!

Irony (5, Funny)

Ltap (1572175) | more than 2 years ago | (#38593472)

So Big Brother shut down Big Brother?

Re:Irony (1)

SeaFox (739806) | more than 2 years ago | (#38593580)

It's their nationalism streak.

They must have felt the U.S. was making a parody of their government policy.

Sometimes, China gets it so right (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38593478)

One-child-per-family, and now this?

Greedy heartless fuckers that they are, even Chinese powerbrokers do their society service once in a while.

Ummmm.... (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38593498)

After watching cable TV in the US over the holidays, could I ask that they do the same thing to American TV?

(Only partially tongue-in-cheek).

Practical arguments against? (3, Insightful)

Cabriel (803429) | more than 2 years ago | (#38593518)

Beside the obvious "OMGFreeSpeech" and "OMG1984" arguments, in the face of garbage programming like American Idol, Survivor, Dancing with the Stars, The Bachelor, The Bachelorette, etc, what practical non-what-if arguments are there for this being a bad thing?

Re:Practical arguments against? (2, Insightful)

Intropy (2009018) | more than 2 years ago | (#38593664)

Because being entertained makes people happy and being happy is better than not being happy.

Re:Practical arguments against? (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38593758)

But watching most of these programs makes people miserable. Watching all the glamor and riches makes the dreary of reality impact all the worse. Unlike movies that are obvious fantasy these lie that this could be real. They have zero educational value, they will never make people feel better. They are just a drug that sucks people's energy and turns them into brainless trash.

Re:Practical arguments against? (1)

Pecisk (688001) | more than 2 years ago | (#38593674)

You can't make people better without making them their choices to be better.

And by the way, bashing "American Idol" is getting old, it is high class performances. Yes, it's overcrowded with money and hype, and it's marketed mainly for teens, but lot of things are. For example those geekish cartoons you loved when you was ten.

Re:Practical arguments against? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38594040)

You make a rather large assumption. That I watched cartoons at 10.

Not interested in logging in for this.

Re:Practical arguments against? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38593686)

Because its not the governments job to say what the masses say is entertainment. If 5 million tax paying morons want to watch any of those stupid shows they should be able to. Its their lives. What classy shit are you watching thats so much better? Seriously, who are you to judge whats entertaining?

Re:Practical arguments against? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38593688)

You mean besides the main argument what fringe arguments are legit for this?

Maybe the fact that the media companies will have less viewers, leading to less people watching ads, leading to less revenue for companies, leading toe conomic collapse?

Wait, you said non-what-if.

Wait, what the fuck, how do I answer this if I can't say "We shouldn't do this because"?

Re:Practical arguments against? (0, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38593692)

Government instability. The reason why the U.S. is so full of the crap. Without mass media entertainment to keep the masses distracted they start to turn to other things to take up their time. Among these things, tends to be actually living and being active in society. When the people are active in a society they question things, get involved in things, and yes challenge things they feel aren't right. This is a huge responsibility on the part of those in power. If they don't keep the masses entertained, they can't really do all the shady things they like to. Just look at how successful Rome was with its Colosseum and all the plays, operas, etc. Imagine if they didn't do these things how hard it would be to maintain the society?

Hell, you don't even have to look that far back in time, just look at the U.S. Look at how many things the government gets away with while the citizens just sit around feeling like they can't do anything anyway, and don't want to waste time trying especially when their time could better be spent watching American Idol and drinking at the pub. Did you see what happened in Europe when the government tried to change the retirement age? The people freaked out. Did you see what happened in the U.S. when the government did raise the retirement age? TV shows cheered by telling wonderful stories of working while your old. Working while your old is living, as no old person wants to be idol, or so said the media. They were right. No old person wants to be useless sitting around, but I think Grandma would prefer having a real life, with friends, family, etc. instead of john, joe and sue manager.

So where am I going with this? Well, the issue for China is going to be how are they going to control the masses with news and education programming? Edutainment maybe? It'll be interesting to see, how much more active Chinese citizens get, which might not be a bad thing, wish it would happen here.

Re:Practical arguments against? (5, Insightful)

tsotha (720379) | more than 2 years ago | (#38593834)

When the people are active in a society they question things, get involved in things, and yes challenge things they feel aren't right.

That's pretty condescending. What makes you think they can't watch a few hours of television and still be informed? When people refer to large groups of people as "sheeple" and wail they won't "wake up" it implies if only people were paying attention they'd think like I think. Well, and stay with me here, maybe they already question things, they're already involved, and they already "challenge things they feel aren't right." Maybe their vision of how things ought to be isn't the same as yours.

I'm guessing from the way your post is written you're not from the US. I'm at a little bit of a loss to understand why you think we in the US would make our country just like yours if only we didn't watch so much television.

Re:Practical arguments against? (2)

Quiet_Desperation (858215) | more than 2 years ago | (#38593892)

The number of "Gosh, I wish this authoritarian bullshit would happen here because I don't like what my neighbor watches on TV" posts is seriously disheartening. WTF happened to the geekverse?

Re:Practical arguments against? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38593700)

what practical non-what-if arguments are there for this being a bad thing?

There's a lot of benefits to having a benevolent power decide what is best for the ignorant masses. They could for example decide mandated exercise schedules, enforce specific diets, require you to socialise in social groups; all of which would help improve your physical and mental wellbeing. Yet all of these, like controlling what you can see, are based on a willing acceptance that a central power can and does decide what is best for you. It doesn't encourage self-control, self-determination, individual responsibility. It is a partial, and authoritarian, solution to a symptom not the cause.

Re:Practical arguments against? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38593922)

Because some geek piece of shit named Cabriel isn't the final authority on what is or isn't garbage? What should they show? Endless Firefly reruns so you can jack off to Josh Whedon? Seriously, a fucking geek making a call on what is allowable entertainment?

I know scientists and doctors who watch Idol and Dancing because they enjoy music and dancing and seeing new talent. Who the holy flying fuck are YOU, you worthless, authoritarian cocksucking sack of useless shit, to say they are wrong?

Just another wannabe geek fascist. You can write some code, therefore you are the pan-cultural authority on all things.

Go fuck your fat ass with a kitchen knife until you bleed out, scumbag.

Re:Practical arguments against? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38594058)

Because some geek piece of shit named Cabriel isn't the final authority on what is or isn't garbage? What should they show? Endless Firefly reruns so you can jack off to Josh Whedon? Seriously, a fucking geek making a call on what is allowable entertainment?

I know scientists and doctors who watch Idol and Dancing because they enjoy music and dancing and seeing new talent. Who the holy flying fuck are YOU, you worthless, authoritarian cocksucking sack of useless shit, to say they are wrong?

Just another wannabe geek fascist. You can write some code, therefore you are the pan-cultural authority on all things.

Go fuck your fat ass with a kitchen knife until you bleed out, scumbag.

Ahhhhhhhh i see the considered reply of the typical well educated YANK need i say more

"For The Evulz" literally (1)

Arancaytar (966377) | more than 2 years ago | (#38593522)

I didn't realize that it is actually possible for a government to decide their people are having too much fun.

Re:"For The Evulz" literally (0)

Quiet_Desperation (858215) | more than 2 years ago | (#38593874)

The USA has been doing that for over a century.

+1 for China on this one (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38593536)

while we lazy arrived Americans excessively entertain our way to idiocrisy.

Was that Future English? (3, Funny)

Quiet_Desperation (858215) | more than 2 years ago | (#38593870)

You seem to have gotten there ahead of us.

Great idea, China (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38593552)

You pound your citizens into the ground like tent stakes with your complete lack of basic human and civil rights, you choke off their access to anything outside of China with your xenophobic censorship laws, and now you take away what little mental escape these people have from your excessive oppresive bullshit by taking away silly TV shows, instead insisting on shoving more news and so-called "educational programming" down their throats? Why don't you just line up 90% of your population against the Great Wall and shoot them dead, turn them into fertilizer for whoever is left? That's about how much good your country is. Fuck you and fuck your communist totalitarian bullshit. I hope you wake up tomorrow and find your 1,000,000,000 people bashing your door in and ripping you to shreds. Just fucking leave people alone!

GO China! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38593558)

If a country has the backspine to get rid of Television, then it is China.

Imagine Ann Coulter, Bill O'Reilly... oh(!) and Democrats... without Television...

Well (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38593568)

If only they did that here. Maybe they would be forced to air something worthy of having cable for.

Vice Taxes (5, Interesting)

Hadlock (143607) | more than 2 years ago | (#38593586)

We tax the snot out of cigarettes and booze because they aren't healthy for society... we've had a TV in every home for 50+ years now, and parents are exposing their children to TV from birth... if you can't restrict people's use of TV, you might as well remove the incentive to watch it by making it more informational/educational, rather than an "opiate of the masses".
 
We ended up with the evening news in a response to a federal mandate that X% be used for reporting the news, how much better off would we have been if we'd restricted entertainment to Y% of the total broadcast time? How would society be if we limited mass entertainment? Would local entertainment like playhouses still be much more successful?

Lucky Chinese (0)

Chrisq (894406) | more than 2 years ago | (#38593712)

I wish we would do the same - starting with Big Brother and Pop Idol

Re:Lucky Chinese (4, Insightful)

tsotha (720379) | more than 2 years ago | (#38593840)

Why don't you just turn your TV off?

Re:Lucky Chinese (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38593924)

Because if we could only choose educational TV to watch at a certain time, society would be brighter. I work with someone who doesn't enjoy reading, and I don't think she reads a book at all at home. If she were to watch TV that was informative because she couldn't watch anything else, I'm sure her life would be richer.

Oblig. Yakov Smirnoff (3, Funny)

donscarletti (569232) | more than 2 years ago | (#38593750)

In China, you watch CCTV (China Central TeleVision), in Soviet Britain, CCTV watches you!

Just like in Star Trek (2)

Rogerborg (306625) | more than 2 years ago | (#38593760)

Heck, I can't even remember anyone watching fictional TV in that documentary.

Funny (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38593790)

The Chinese government is almost as funny as the South African government.

Someone in the Chinese Communist Party... (4, Funny)

blind biker (1066130) | more than 2 years ago | (#38593816)

Someone in the CCP must have seen Jersey Shore, and decided to stop the trend before it's too late.

We'll see if that works... (1)

Karmashock (2415832) | more than 2 years ago | (#38593824)

given the age we live in it is unlikely the chinese regulators will be able to control it. But perhaps it will have some effect on the character of the country. Who can say. Similar restrictions in US history influenced it's culture.

Liberalism (0, Troll)

ksemlerK (610016) | more than 2 years ago | (#38593828)

First they pass laws to ensure equality among persons given the effort. Next they pass laws to ensure equality among persons regardless of the effort. Next they MANDATE that all people are equal in all aspects regardless of education or effort Finally, they mandate what activities, and what you must do to entertain yourself. After all, it's all in the name of equality. Everybody else has access to this, and watches it, so you must also be reduced to those sole choices. Socialism: Sharing misery equally since 1948 [marxists.org] .

Typical Liberalism (-1)

ksemlerK (610016) | more than 2 years ago | (#38593842)

First they pass laws to ensure equality among persons given the effort.

Next they pass laws to ensure equality among persons regardless of the effort.

Next they MANDATE that all people are equal in all aspects regardless of education or effort

Finally, they mandate what activities, and what you must do to entertain yourself. After all, it's all in the name of equality. Everybody else has access to this, and watches it, so you must also be reduced to those sole choices. Socialism: Sharing misery equally since 1948>/a> [marxists.org]

U.S. already far in advance (1)

SuperKendall (25149) | more than 2 years ago | (#38593850)

The last time I checked out the cable situation a few months ago, the U.S. has already scrubbed entertainment from broadcast and cable TV.

I am not sure if this was a patriotic move on the part of Hollywood to build a nation of young people who enjoyed more sunshine, or something imposed upon them by government officials afraid of citizens enjoying themselves too greatly as it would seem China has encountered. Either way, the U.S. beat ya' to it China!

State media is magic (1)

Quiet_Desperation (858215) | more than 2 years ago | (#38593852)

More news, more education, and endless pony marathons.

China is different. Don't you get that? (4, Insightful)

msobkow (48369) | more than 2 years ago | (#38593886)

The very fundamental ideals of Chinese society place family and the greater community at higher priority than the individual's wants or needs. I suspect the vast majority of the Chinese people actually don't mind this. Those that do can certainly access media from elsewhere in the world -- technology is wide spread in China.

You really need to get the image of rice farms out of your heads.

Re:China is different. Don't you get that? (3, Insightful)

msobkow (48369) | more than 2 years ago | (#38593904)

State run TV means it's going to serve the priorities of the state. It's not a commercial enterprise out to win the greatest number of eyeballs, but a tool of the government first and the entertainment of the people second.

It's not unlike the emphasis the CBC placed on their programming mix when state-run TV was the only option in Canada. I saw a lot of documentaries, docu-drama histories, and educational shows when I was young.

Not about taste (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38593942)

The real idea here is to leverage television as a tool of propaganda - Hu Jintao more or less laid it all out in a recent series of essays. The government believes that wanting the sorts of things western countries wants erodes their ability to influence public policy, so they're steering the boat back around. The earlier move to block most science fiction time-travel shows was another example. Sci-fi is a great tool for political discourse, which is a no-no on the mainland.

Interesting... (1)

Bensam123 (1340765) | more than 2 years ago | (#38593958)

Most people view this as a good thing, yet they some how don't think China will shape what people watch based around how they want to condition them. No sir, China is just out to cancel all forms of reality TV and badddd programing. They're going to show their kids Sesame street from now on too!

a trend toward low taste (1)

Barryke (772876) | more than 2 years ago | (#38593974)

'The rule, first announced in October, is targeted at what Chinese regulators have called "excessive entertainment and a trend toward low taste," to address the rise of talent shows, dating shows and other such programming

I could not agree more.

Disclaimer: I have a dislike for shows, i'll have me some non-fiction documentaries or fiction comedy instead.

That Seals It! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38594006)

If there was ever any doubt China was going to overtake the west it's gone now. :)
I have no idea how Chinese kids grow up but the vast majority of western kids spend their time playing FPS games and watching junk TV...which is pretty much what I've been doing for the last decade and a half, and I know it's turned my brain to mush.

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