China Forbids TV Shows From ‘Sensationalizing’ Child Stars

The treatment of minors on reality TV programs has long faced scrutiny from authorities, media, and netizens.

China’s National Radio and Television Administration announced new guidelines for TV programs involving minors on Wednesday, effectively cracking down on reality shows starring the children of celebrities.

Under the guidelines, which go into effect April 30, shows that star or are intended for children are prohibited from “sensationalizing” and “over-commercializing” minors. Such shows, whether broadcast on TV or streamed online, must also refrain from promoting violence, competition, underage romance, or discussions about fame and wealth.

According to the announcement, the move is intended to protect the well-being of underage performers generally and the children of celebrities specifically.

Following the popularity of “Dad, Where Are We Going?” — a hit TV program that pits father-child pairs against one another in various competitions — China has seen a deluge of reality shows featuring parents and their children. Based on a Korean program of the same name, the show premiered in 2013 and quickly achieved commercial success, becoming one of China’s most-watched reality shows by 2014.

But the show’s gradual downfall in the years since has signaled a sea change in the entertainment industry. In 2016, the country’s media regulators banned the “overuse” of celebrities’ children in reality television programs, forcing “Dad, Where Are We Going?” to move to online streaming platform Mango TV. Continue to read the full article here.


– This article originally appeared on Sixth Tone.