Tencent, the Chinese conglomerate that partners with Epic Games to sell in China, has announced a new set of rules for anyone who streams their games domestically.
China’s headlong dash into the cyber dystopia we all fear continues with the latest news from Tencent. Apparently, the massive Chinese publisher has rolled out a set of new rules for any Chinese national to abide by if they want to continue streaming their games.
The rules come to us from Niko Partners, an intelligence company that deals with Asian game markets. They list a dozen rules that Tencent has published that streamers must follow under threat of being banned from streaming any Tencent games. And in China, almost every game is a Tencent game.
Without further ado, the rules are:
- Violation of China’s social values involving sensitive topics such as politics, ethnicity and religion
- Promoting or publishing content that violates China’s social values, including but not limited to pornography, gambling, terrorism
- Behaviour that damages the Tencent Games brand directly or indirectly
- Distributing false information to other users through any means
- Engaging in vulgar or indecent information
- Distributing or promoting game cheat software or virus software
- Promoting excessive violence in game or in the real world
- Infringing on the privacy of other users or revealing other users information without permission
- Failure to abide by rules of the contract signed with third parties (streaming platforms)
- Infringing the copyright of game makers or other content creators
- Causing disputes or adverse social impact
- Other actions that do not comply with current laws, ethics and game regulations
Niko Partners notes that the Chinese government has recently begun pushing for a “healthier” games and streaming environment, and while we here in the west can likely agree that certain games could do with a hefty dose of wholesomeness, the rules that Tencent has written seem deliberately vague and wide-ranging to basically eliminate any behavior that Tencent doesn’t approve of.
Rule 11 banning any action that produces an “adverse social impact” could mean literally anything that Tencent doesn’t like, while rule 12 bans actions that do not comply with “ethics” regulations that are never defined. Anyone found in violation of these rules would be banned from streaming Tencent games (so basically almost all of them).
Tencent is coming under increasing pressure from the Chinese government to crack down on certain aspects of gaming culture that they don’t like. Another aspect is pre-teens playing for hours on end. Last November, Tencent implemented a system that monitors a child’s gaming time and cuts them off after between 1 to 2 hours per day.
The Chinese government has also taken steps against games like Fortnite for what it says is “excessive violence and gore,” even though Fortnite famously has a cartoonish aesthetic and not an ounce of blood from any virtual wounds.
(via PC Gamer)