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Code of Conduct for Online Presenters

Promulgation Date: 2022-6-8
Title: 国家广播电视总局、文化和旅游部关于印发《网络主播行为规范》的通知
Document Number:广电发〔2022〕36号
Expiration date:                
Promulgating Entities: State Administration of Radio and Television, Ministry of Culture and Tourism
Source of text:
Our Commentary:

To all provincial, autonomous region, or directly governed municipality departments (Bureaus) for culture and tourism and radio and television bureaus, and the Xinjiang Production and Construction Corps Bureau for Culture, Sport, Radio, Television, and Tourism:

The State Administration of Radio and Television and the Ministry of Culture and Tourism have jointly drafted this Code of Conduct for Online Presenters in order to further regulate the conduct of online presenters, strengthen the construction of professional ethics, and promote the healthy and orderly development of the industry. It is hereby released to you for earnest implementation in consideration of actual considerations.

State Administration of Radio and Television, Ministry of Culture and Tourism

June 8, 2022

Code of Conduct for Online Presenters

Online presenters bear important duties and play an important role in disseminating scientific and cultural knowledge, enriching spiritual and cultural life, and promoting economic and social development. This Code of Conduct is drafted so as to further strengthen the establishment of professional ethics for online hosts, to regulate behavior in practice, strengthen social responsibility, establish a positive image, and to jointly create an online space that is positive and uplifting, healthy and orderly, harmonious and clean.

Article 1: Presenters who provide online performance and audio-visual programming services through the internet, including persons who livestream on online platforms, interact with users in realtime, or speak and appear in uploaded audiovisual programs, shall follow this Code of Conduct. This Code of Conduct applies by reference to virtual presenters and content synthesized through artificial intelligence.

Article 2: Online presenters shall conscientiously comply with Constitution, laws, and regulations of the PRC; preserve the national interest, public interest, and the lawful rights and interests of others, and conscientiously fulfill social responsibility and accept the oversight from the competent industry departments and the public.

Article 3: Online presenters shall comply with provisions related to the real-name registration system for online accounts, and cooperate with platforms in providing truthful and valid identification information in carrying out registration and regulating the use of account names.

Article 4: Online presenters shall adhere to the correct political orientation, orientation for public opinion guidance, and values orientation; establishing a correct perspective on the world, life, and values; actively practicing the Core Socialist Values, advocating social morality, abiding by professional ethics, and cultivating personal ethics.

Article 5: Online presenters shall persist in a people-centered creative orientation, and online performances and audiovisual program content shall reflect the atmosphere of the new era, honor the people's new creations, advocate the exceptional traditional Chinese culture, transmit positive energy, display truth, virtue, and beauty, to satisfy the people's new needs for a good life.

Article 6: Online presenters shall adhere to healthy taste and style, consciously discarding low-level tastes such as the vulgar, coarse, or kitch, and consciously opposing negative phenomena like traffic chasing, abnormal aesthetics, out-of-control 'fandom', and money worship; and consciously resisting conduct that violates laws and regulations, damages online civility, is contrary to online morality, and is harmful to harmony online.

Article 7: Online presenters shall guide users to interact civilly, express themselves rationally, spend reasonably, and jointly build a civil and healthy environment for online performances and audiovisual programming.

Article 8: Online presenters shall maintain a positive image, with civil and appropriate performances, costumes, makeup, language, conduct, gestures, image displays etc., conforming to the public's aesthetic tastes and habits of enjoyment.

Article 9: Online presenters shall respect the rights of citizens and legal persons in their names and reputations; respect personal rights to privacy and one's image, and respect and protect the lawful rights and interests of minors, the elderly, and persons with disabilities.

Article 10: Online presenters shall comply with laws and regulations on intellectual property rights, conscientiously respecting the intellectual property rights of others.

Article 11: Online presenters shall truthfully report their income and fulfill tax obligations in accordance with law.

Article 12: Online presenters shall use the nation's common spoken and written language in accordance with standardized writing methods and meanings, increasing linguistic and cultural literacy, consciously containing the spread of coarse and crude online jargon, to jointly build a healthy and civil linguistic environment online.

Article 13: Online presenters shall conscientiously enhance learning to take hold of the knowledge and techniques necessary for presenting.

For livestream content that requires a higher professional level (such as medical care, finance, law, education) presenters should obtain the corresponding practice qualifications and report them to the livestream platform; the livestream platform should review and file presenters qualifications.

Article 14: Online presenters must not exhibit the following conduct during online performances or audiovisual program services:

1. Publishing content contrary to the basic principles set forth in the Constitution or contrary to state laws and regulations;

2. Publishing content that subverts state power, endangers national unity, sovereignty, and territorial integrity, endangers national security, divulges state secrets, or harms the nation's dignity, honor and interests;

3. Publishing content that weakens, distorts or denies the leadership of the Communist Party of China, the socialist system, or Reform and Opening;

4. Belittling exceptional ethnic cultural traditions, inciting ethnic hatred or ethnic discrimination, distorting ethnic history or ethnic historical figures, injuring ethnic sentiments, undermining ethnic unity or encroaching on ethic customs and habits;

5. Violating state religious policies, carrying out religious activities outside of religious venues, promoting religious extremism, cults, and other such content;

6. Parodying, belittling, distorting, or using improper methods to present the exceptional culture of the Chinese people, the revolutionary culture, or the advanced socialist culture;

7. Parodying, distorting, mocking, desecrating, or denying the deeds and spirit of heroes, martyrs, and model persons.

8. Using face swapping and other deep fake technology to counterfeit or modify Party leaders, heroes and martyrs, Party history, history, and so forth;

9. Harming the public image of specified professions and groups such as people's armed forces, police, or judges;

10. Advocating discrimination on the basis of ethnicity, nationality, geography, sex, profession, or physical and mental impairments;

11. Advocating pornography, gambling, drug use, glamorized violence, gore, terror, pyramid sales, fraud, and the incitement of crimes, or the transmitting criminal methods, exposing investigative methods, and displaying guns and controlled knives;

12. Fabricating or intentionally transmitting false information on terrorism, or false dangers, diseases, disasters, and alerts; disrupting social governance and public order, and undermining social stability;

13. Presenting images, dialog, music, or sound effects of excessive terror, physical suffering, or psychological hysteria that create strong sensory and emotional stimulation and might cause physical and psychological discomfort;

14. Insulting or defaming others, or spreading others' private information, and infringing on others' lawful rights and interests;

15. Using works in which others hold copyrights, without authorization;

16. Hyping hot social topics and sensitive issues, or intentionally creating "hot issues" in public opinion;

17. Hyping gossip, scandals, and misdeeds; spreading prurient content, publicizing content that is contrary to the Core Socialist Values or that violates public order and good custom;

18. Presentation of costumes, makeup, language, conduct, livestream studio sets, etc. that are sexually suggestive or provocative;

19. Introducing or displaying harmful content that might readily lead minors' to imitate it, such as suicides, self-mutilation, violence and gore, and high-risk actions; or showing content that induces bad habits in minors such as smoking or heavy drinking;

20. Using minors, or characters who are minors, to conduct advertisement type commercial publicity,performances, or as a gimmick to obtain commercial or improper interests, leading to incorrect values, perspectives on life, and moral views;

21. Advocating cultural habits and thinking that are feudal superstition, or going against common scientific knowledge;

22. Destroying the ecology and environment, or displaying content such as torturing animals, hunting or eating nationally protected animal species;

23. Exaggerating food waste, displaying fake eating, vomiting, binge drinking and eating, or other content that easily creates negative models of food spending and waste;

24. Leading vulgar interactions among users, organizing and inciting fans to smear and insult each other, launch wars of belittling each other, gossip and attack, and carry out cyberviolence;

25. Marketing fake or shoddy goods, goods that violate intellectual property rights, or that do not comply with safety requirements for persons and property, faking traffic by fabricating or altering data such as on transactions, follows, views, or 'likes';

26. Exaggerating publicity to mislead consumers, deceiving consumers through false promises, using absolute language, marketing exclusive goods without authorization, and other violations of laws and regulations on advertising;

27. Using "bullet comments", livestream room names, announcements, voice, and so forth to transmit false or harassing advertisements;

28. Using organized hyping or hiring of water brigades (paid traffic generators) to publicize tactics such as "price giveaways", hinting enticing, and encouraging users to give large value "tips", leading minors to give "tips", or giving "tips" using fake identification information;

29. Filming or broadcasting in venues that involve national security or public safety, that impact the normal order of social production and life, impact the normal life of others, violate others' privacy, and so forth, or in other venues prohibited by laws and regulations;

30. Flaunting wealth by showing or hyping a large volume of luxury goods, jewels, bills, and other such property, showing immoderate and wasteful lifestyles, and disparaging low-income groups;

31. Other conduct prohibited by laws and regulations as well as that which creates a negative impact on the online performance and online audiovisual ecology.

Article 15: All levels of administrative department for culture and tourism and for radio and television should adhere to the guidance of Xi Jinping Thought on Socialism with Chinese Characteristics for a New Era, strengthen oversight and management of online performances, online audiovisual platforms, and management agencies, as well as online presenters; to truly tighten oversight responsibility and entity responsibility. The online performance and audiovisual platforms are to be promptly charged with addressing violations by online presenters that are discovered. Online performance and audiovisual platforms' and management agencies' regulation of online presenters, as well as online presenters' compliance in practice, is to be included in the scope of permit management, routine management, security inspections, and program release management evaluations by the departments for culture and tourism and for radio and television.

Article 16: All levels of administrative department for culture and tourism and for radio and television and comprehensive law enforcement bodies for the cultural market should further strengthen law enforcement inspection patrols for online performance and audiovisual platforms as well as management agencies; lawfully investigating and handling online performance and audiovisual platforms that provide content that violates laws and regulations, and urging platforms and management agencies to promptly address content that violates laws and regulations as well as online presenters.

Article 17: Online performance and audiovisual platforms, as well as management agencies, should strictly fulfill legally-prescribed duties and obligations, and implement entity responsibility. Strengthen education and training, routine management, and standardized guidance of online presenters on the basis of this Code of Conduct. Establish and complete internal system specifications such as for online presenters' entry, training, routine management, operations scoring archives, and "yellow or red" card management. Positive incentives are to be given to online presenters who are uplifting and models of compliance with the code of conduct; warnings and restraints are to be strengthened for online presenters who have violations; and accounts shall be closed for online presenters with serious issues or that have repeated problems and do not change their ways, and they are to be entered into an online presenter "blacklist" or "warning list", and not permitted to resume broadcasts through methods such as changing account names or platforms. Where online presenters have committed a crime, criminal responsibility is to be pursued in accordance with law. Artists who violate the law and go against morality shall not be provided with opportunities to publicly perform or speak, or appear, so as to prevent their shifting positions to stage a comeback. Online performance and audiovisual management agencies should strengthen the management and restraint of online presenters, providing management services in accordance with laws and regulations, and preserving the lawful rights and interests of online presenters.

Article 18: All relevant industry associations should strengthen guidance, establish and complete credit appraisal systems for online presenters, further improve industry codes of conduct and self-discipline conventions, explore the establishment of mechanisms for restricted relationships between platforms and presenters, actively carry out moral evaluations, strengthen training and guidance services, preserve the positive online ecology, and promote the regulated development of the industry on the basis of this Code of Conduct. There is to be a periodic publication of online presenters who violate laws and regulations, and who do not obey accepted moral norms, creating a vile social impact, and all platforms are to be guided to jointly boycott and sternly punish them.

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