As hundreds of downloading websites were shut down, China's State Administration of Radio, Film and Television (SARFT) said Saturday that sites offering free movie and music downloads will have to solve the "copyright problem" if they want to reopen.
"In recent years some websites spread a large number of pirated films, TV dramas and other programs publicly. Some of these programs contain lewd content. Such behaviors severely harmed young people's health and copyright owners' interests," said an official with the online video and audio program department under the SARFT.
The official said that regulating online audio and video services is a "long-term task", and as long as these websites don't solve the copyright problem, they won't be allowed to reopen.
According to the SARFT, these closed websites didn't have a license issued by the administration.
Statistics show that currently more than 530 BitTorrent (BT) websites have been closed, including major download search engine BTChina.net.
BT is a peer-to-peer file sharing agreement.
Li Yongqiang, president assistant of multi-media software company Baofeng, said the government's crackdown would promote the common sense of normative operation among Chinese websites and was a step forward to solving problems such as piracy and online porn.
However, as many netizens expressed support for the activity, others pointed out that licensed websites should not blame everything on unlicensed sites.
Netizen "Yanshan Tanke" said licensed sites should expand their resources and offer more convenient services with high connection speed and reasonable prices.
According to the SARFT, the administration will continue the crackdown while further regulating licensing.