China has banned references to hip-hop culture and actors with tattoos from appearing in the media as part of a crackdown on “low taste content”.
There were four “don’ts” that the media must now abide by, according to Gao Changli, the publicity department director at the State Administration of Press, Publication, Radio, Film and Television of the People’s Republic of China (SAPPRFT).
”Absolutely do not use actors whose heart and morality are not aligned with the party and whose morality is not noble,” he said.
“Absolutely do not use actors who are tasteless, vulgar and obscene. Absolutely do not use actors whose ideological level is low and have no class. Absolutely do not use actors with stains, scandals and problematic moral integrity.”
Chinese news outlet Sina reported that the regulator now “specifically requires that programs should not feature actors with tattoos [or depict] hip hop culture, sub-culture and dispirited culture.”
Hip hop artists Wang Hao, known as “PG One” and Zhou Yan, known as “GAI”, both won popular television show “Rap of China “, but both were sanctioned in recent weeks for bad behaviour or content at odds with Communist Party values.
PG One was forced to apologise for lewd lyrics, which critics said were insulting to women and encouraged the use of recreational drugs.
Last July, Beijing’s Municipal Bureau of Culture said it was “not appropriate” for Justin Bieber to tour in China because previous performances there had created “public dissatisfaction.”
A month later, organisers aiming to bring Grammy Award-winning artists to China said they would only “promote artists with a positive and healthy image.”
Citizens reacted with anger to the ban, flooding Chinese social media with negative comments.
“How can a government with high culture have such childish logic?” one user wrote on Weibo — China’s equivalent of Twitter.