China / Society

TV broadcast restriction to regulate industry

By Han Bingbin ( Updated: 2014-04-16 14:14

Starting from Jan 1, 2015, Chinese TV series will no longer be allowed to broadcast on more than two satellite channels at the same time during prime time, according to the latest regulation issued by the country's top media authority.

TV series run on satellite channels during prime time will also be restricted to no more than two episodes each day, the regulation by the State Administration of Press, Publication, Radio, Film and Television states.

The move is to "further balance the program structures of satellite channels, strengthening their positions as comprehensive platforms, optimize resources of the channels and enrich TV screens," the administration said on its website on Tuesday.

A popular Chinese TV series can currently be broadcast on as many as five satellite channels at the same time. This is often seen as a waste of resources, because China reportedly produces as many as 15,000 episodes of TV series a year, but no more than half have the chance to be shown on TV.

Yin Hong, a professor of communications with Tsinghua University, told Beijing News the new regulation is expected to increase the number of TV series that are broadcast. Less money will be made by production companies as fewer TV stations will buy each series, Cao Ping, producer of the phenomenally popular TV series The Legend of Zhenhuan, told Beijing News.

A common complaint in the TV industry is that famous actors charge unreasonably high fees. The new regulation, Cao said, is expected to bring down payments to actors and crew members.


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