Facebook launched Facebook Live last week, while in China tons of live streaming mobile apps have been emerging since last year. With nearly anyone able to live stream anything on these platforms, concerns have arisen in China that the platforms might exist in a legal gray zone and may be used to potentially produce banned content like pornography.
More than 20 companies that are doing live streaming business in Beijing released a self-censor agreement on Wednesday, pledging to make sure content on their platforms is legal and healthy.
Companies include traditional video streaming platforms that have live broadcasting capabilities like iQiyi, LeEco and Youku and startups that make live streaming mobile apps like inke TV, Huajiao.com and 6.cn.
According to the agreement, the companies will implement several conditions starting Monday. The primary requirement is the completion of a real-name registration process for all users who want to stream live videos. This involves providing an ID number, phone number, bank card info, and even a face-to-face Q&A session with reviewers. And sorry to those under 18, you are excluded from being able to be a live streaming “anchor”.
All videos must be watermarked with the logo or name of the platform that hosts them, and all videos have to be saved by the platforms for at least 15 days. Hosts who cover the following content will be banned: political content, gun-, drug- and violence-related content and erotic content. Once found out by the 24-hour supervisor, one’s ID will be banned, and if the content is deemed especially egregious, an offender can be blacklisted and banned by all the platforms.
Will this agreement prevent companies and people from using “incidents” like the live streaming of someone having sex this January on Douyu TV for marketing hype, and will it change the live streaming scene in China much at all?
(Top photo from Huajiao.com)