|Recent state media comments on China's huge gaming sector have sparked fears that big firms such as Tencent may be in the crosshairs of regulators. (File photo by=AFP/Noel Celis)|
[Asia News = Reporter Reakkana] BEIJING: Chinese authorities have ordered gaming giants Tencent and NetEase to end their focus on profits and cut content perceived to be breeding "effeminacy", as Beijing tries to direct youth culture, gender ideals and the reach of big tech, AFP reported.
The move is the latest by authorities to tighten their grip on the embattled technology sector, and sent shares in some of the industry's biggest names plunging. Officials on Wednesday (Sep 9) summoned gaming enterprises including Tencent and NetEase, the two market leaders in China's multibillion-dollar gaming scene, to discuss further curbs on the industry, which has already been ordered to limit gaming time for those under 18 to three hours a week. Among the new targets are media representations of men, which experts say are a cause for anxiety among the conservative, older generation of Communist Party leaders. In recent days, regulators ordered broadcasters to resist "abnormal aesthetics" like "sissy" men, calling for more masculine representations in programming.
Late on Wednesday, the official Xinhua news agency reported the latest edicts against gaming. Enterprises who flout rules will be punished, authorities warned. The latest talks add to tightening oversight on tech giants in the world's biggest gaming market, with Beijing rolling out rules to weed out the excesses of the culture among Chinese youth, from worsening eyesight to online addiction.