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Only 'Ethically Inspiring TV Series' Can Be Shown in Prime Time
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China's broadcasting watchdog will impose stricter restrictions over prime time TV series from February 2007, an official has said.

The country's satellite TV stations should only screen "ethically inspiring TV series" during prime time, which reflect the reality of China in a positive way, Wang Weiping, vice director in charge of TV programs with the State Administration of Radio, Film and Television (SARFT), said at a recent meeting.

The restriction will go into effect in February and last for at least 8 months, according to Wang.

SARFT has instituted a four-level censorship system for all home-made TV series. Before being screened, homemade TV series must be vetted by the Publicity Department of the CPC Central Committee and by SARFT.

"The restrictions will ensure a better TV environment," said Wang.

Reports from QQ.com, a popular portal in China, said the restrictions had been imposed with an eye on the 17th National Congress of the Communist Party of China which is scheduled to convene in Beijing in the second half of this year.

SARFT has previously imposed several restrictions on TV programs, including a ban on foreign cartoons during prime time from last September, and a crackdown on "vulgar reality shows" earlier this month.

An earlier report claiming that last August SARFT banned family TV series involving extramarital affairs during prime time television was denied by SARFT officials.

(Xinhua News Agency January 22, 2007)

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