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Censorship China Television Your Rights Online

China Censors "The Big Bang Theory" and Other Streaming Shows 166

dryriver (1010635) writes in with news that the Chinese government has had enough of the antics of doctor Sheldon Lee Cooper. "Chinese authorities have ordered video streaming websites in the country to stop showing four popular American TV shows, including The Big Bang Theory and The Good Wife, senior staff from two sites said Sunday. The move suggests government attention is intensifying on the online streaming industry, which is freer than state television and China's cinemas to show foreign productions and other content and has stretched the boundaries of what can be seen in the country. A spokeswoman for a leading online video site, Youku, said it had received notification on Saturday not to show sitcom The Big Bang Theory, political and legal drama The Good Wife, crime drama NCIS and legal drama The Practice."
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China Censors "The Big Bang Theory" and Other Streaming Shows

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  • Well judged (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 27, 2014 @06:14PM (#46854999)

    All terrible shows that the world could do without.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 27, 2014 @06:34PM (#46855113)

    China is much more concerned about "cultural contamination", not just political contamination. While the Chinese are Communists, they are not the hyper-political communists of the Soviet Union where culture such as religion and traditions were a plague to be eradicated, they are Communists with an eye towards preserving their very ancient culture.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 27, 2014 @06:47PM (#46855179)

    Excellent movie, but it was missing almost all references to the banking system and TARP funds. For example, the entire scene at the end, where Derek Jeter hands them documents regarding banking fraud (their "next case"), was cut. The info graphics credits sequence omitted everything but the Ponzi scheme part (but it wasn't just cut off after that; the credits continued with the part after the info graphics). You can view the sequence on Youtube, but that's not complete either: It's missing the AIG and TARP bits.

    So China bans Big Bang Theory. What is being hidden from you?

  • by macpacheco ( 1764378 ) on Sunday April 27, 2014 @06:49PM (#46855185)

    tBBT shows enough pure unadulterated American freedom that is in conflict with sanitized state controlled media.
    China isn't the only country whose govts are pissed with pure uncensored internet freedom. Even my Brazil "democracy" has tried to police twitter, facebook, google plus to censure critics of politicians specially right before elections. Remember Turkey has banned twitter and facebook.
    Realize that without serious state controlled media, China will fracture into dozens of states. It's internal language, cultural and social disparities rival only the former USSR.
    China invented the technique of legalism back in (259 BC – 210 BC) when "China Qin Shi Huang" gave his name to his country, in the past having even censured attempts to use history against current rulers.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 27, 2014 @07:57PM (#46855495)

    Meh, I dunno, NCIS is pretty obvious US propaganda, although probably more aimed at aligning the views of americans to the will of the powers that be. Big bang theory, no idea why they decided to ban this. The two other shows, I dunno, never watched them but legal dramas tend to paint lawyers and cops as honest people with high standards for thruth and justice, some sort of idealised version of how america could be if it wasn't all corrupt, so I can see some propaganda value there.

  • Re:So? (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Windwraith ( 932426 ) on Sunday April 27, 2014 @10:01PM (#46856011)

    Yes, there's no "need" to pirate per se. But in several cases getting that content legitimately, in Europe, is close to impossible. We are not talking just "delayed release" as the parent poster said, we are also talking about stuff that never, ever, is released commercially in Europe or regions of Europe for whatever reason. Not to mention some European countries like Spain do everything in their power to prevent you from legally purchasing products from other regions, or at least make it much more expensive than it should.

    This is different as don't wanting to play by their terms, this is literally having no terms to play with in several cases. And I understand his sentiment, it's a big deal when China can't have those, but when Europe doesn't have US-produced content, shows or articles, nobody gives a damn and we even get called out on pirating stuff we can't purchase without being rich. Please.

    Maybe that doesn't bug you, but it's a thing that happens, believe it or not.

  • by Sycraft-fu ( 314770 ) on Sunday April 27, 2014 @10:46PM (#46856215)

    One is that they do a pretty good job portraying various kinds of geeks. Since it is a comedy it makes light of unflattering and silly characteristics that those geeks have. Well, many people can't laugh at themselves. Real life Sheldon Coopers can't laugh at themselves any more than the character can, and thus the character would be something they don't like.

    Another is jealousy. The characters on the show have generally had a good deal of success in love, despite being geeky, with very pretty women. This is something that many of the real life geeks on Slashdot do not share. Hence, there is jealousy of the characters.

    Finally there is the hipster-ish anti-pop culture thing. That somehow, if something is popular, it can't be good. For many geek, part of the identity is being an outcast, being different, and liking different things. So liking something mainstream won't do at all for them, not because they don't actually like it but because it would conflict with their self identity.

    Personally, I think it is hilarious. Not quite as good as the IT Crowd, but I enjoy it and it makes me laugh regularly. Being that it is a comedy, that is all I can ask :).

  • Re:So? (Score:0, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 28, 2014 @12:09AM (#46856521)

    So you are in agreement with the above post stating " because you want the content they produced but don't want to play by their terms". Believe it or not but there are a bunch of folks who make a living by producing and releasing content. Murdoch might take his cut but your $70 a month does pay for a lot of other things. Your entitlement complex has you justifying theft because you don't want to pay.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 28, 2014 @01:05AM (#46856685)
    I have watched a fair amount of The Big Bang Theory, but something I read put most clearly into words what bothered me about it: The Big Bang Theory's jokes are very often about humiliating its characters for being geeks/nerds. On the other hand, see Community, which, while it also makes fun of its characters, it lets them have geeky interests without making fun of them for it. The other not-funny-ness in The Big Theory is pretty much normal for sitcoms (e.g. the laugh track other comments are complaining about).

...there can be no public or private virtue unless the foundation of action is the practice of truth. - George Jacob Holyoake