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China Bringing Down Satellite TV

16 августа 2007
Officials in China are cracking down on pay-TV operators that have been offering unauthorized foreign satellite broadcasts - the latest move of the communist government's attempt at controlling information within its borders. According to Chinese reports, the country's television regulatory agency recently ordered local authorities to determine which operators are providing customers with foreign channels officially restricted to hotels where tourists stay.

Hong Kong's South China Morning Post said summaries of the State Administration of Radio, Film and Television's order say the strategy is aimed at strengthening regulation, maintaining government information controls and "blocking the intellectual and cultural infiltration of enemy forces."

The paper said penalties were not stipulated, but violating operators would have to re-apply for the right to receive all satellite broadcasts.

The most recognized company to be subjected to the crackdown is said to be Hong Kong's News Corp.-backed Phoenix satellite news channel - a network highly popular among the country's urban middle class and received by millions of homes despite the regulations. The administration's report said the maneuver will both silence voices other than approved media opinions and protect the monopolies of local stations that have lost viewers to outlets like Phoenix.



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