A state media claims China is fighting scandal-hit celebrities it refers to as "social tumors" as part of a deep transformation in the industrial, financial, and cultural sectors. According to experts, President Xi Jinping is attacking post-Mao liberalization, which, along with capitalism free markets, exposed people to Western influences such as celebrity culture, which encourages individuality rather than collectivism.
An opinion article published by China's state-run media system expressed praise for Chinese President Xi Jinping's crackdown on celebrity culture and Western influences. Xi recently unveiled a set of laws aimed at addressing "shared prosperity" in a country where income disparity continues to increase, according to the parties.
China's celebrity, capitalism crackdown
These steps vary from restricting the number of time children may spend playing video games to cracking down on Bitcoin miners and the country's largest IT companies, as per Newsweek. To regulate what it deems the country's chaotic celebrity fan culture, Xi Jinping's administration banned platforms from publishing popularity rankings and imposed limits on the sale of fan products last week.
As online influencer culture grows throughout the world, China has seen a surge in "Rice Circles," where groups of young fans cluster around their favorite artists, spending enormous sums of money to help them win competition events and yelling abuse at competing groups.
Last week, a list of "misbehaving celebrities" who were purportedly blacklisted by Beijing was shared on social media. It comes after Alibaba's billionaire owner, Jack Ma, went missing for three months and had his companies reorganized.
Ant Group, his most recent company, was attempting to transform Chinese banking, and Jack Ma has previously criticized the country's established financial structure. In addition to Alibaba, DiDi was removed from app stores for allegedly courting foreign investment, and video game developer Tencent was accused of poisoning children with "spiritual opium."
Xi Jinping's common prosperity campaign
Per Daily Mail, although the tech industry represents over a third of China's GDP, the government's assault on big tech has erased $1.2 trillion from the market. Children were barred from playing online games for more than three hours each week this week, dealing another blow to China's huge video gaming firms.
The highest disciplinary committee of the Communist Party heard testimony on Monday that capitalism was attempting to manipulate young people, steal economic gains, and even alter society's beliefs and cultures.
When it comes to President Xi Jinping's "common prosperity" drive to reduce wealth disparity in China, it appears that the country's top television and film celebrities are unprotected by their stardom. Authorities are keeping an eye on the country's tech behemoths for actions that are judged monopolistic or harmful to the public interest.
Even some of China's most prominent celebrities are now caught in the campaign's harsh spotlight. Shanghai tax officials said on Friday that actress Zheng Shuang will be fined a total of 299 million yuan ($46.2 million).
Authorities claim that Zheng neglected to report a significant portion of her income and therefore avoided paying taxes. According to a statement, tax evasion was conducted with a "clear purpose to significantly disrupt the system of tax collection." As part of her penalty, Shanghai officials required Zheng to pay fines and back taxes, NIKKEI reported.