China fines comedy company $2 million -News

China One of China’s most famous comedy companies was fined 14.7 million yuan ($2.13 million) on Wednesday and accused of “endangering society”. army One of the comedians’ jokes drew strong public criticism.

The Beijing branch of China’s Ministry of Culture and Tourism said it would fine Shanghai Xiaoguo Culture Media Co Ltd 13.35 million yuan and confiscate 1.35 million yuan of the company’s “illegal gains” after discovering Li Haoshi’s latest performance. Famous building, violated the rules.

With performances such as stand-up comedy growing in popularity, the incident has sharply divided the Chinese public over what kind of jokes are inappropriate and highlighted the limits of what is appropriate in a country where authorities say must promote core socialist values .

Earlier this week, an audience member posted online a joke he made during a live stand-up performance in Beijing on May 13, saying it was disparaging of the People’s Liberation Army (PLA), Li said on Chinese social media. quickly became popular.

In jokes, Li recalled seeing two of his adopted stray dogs chasing a squirrel, saying it reminded him of the phrase “good style, can fight and win wars,” a phrase Chinese President Xi Jinping said in 2013 The slogan used in 2009 praised the professionalism of the PLA.

“We will never allow any company or individual to use the capital as a stage to wantonly slander the glorious image of the PLA,” the bureau said, adding that Xiaoguo Culture would be banned from holding any future performances in Beijing.

In response to the fine, Xiaoguo blamed the incident on a “major loophole in management” and said it had terminated its contract with Li.

Reuters could not immediately reach Li for comment, and Weibo appears to have banned him from posting on Weibo.

Founded in Shanghai in 2015, Xiaoguo Culture has grown in popularity in tandem with China’s craze for stand-up comedy, and is known for raising the profile of hundreds of local comedians.

The company and its artists have previously clashed with authorities. In July 2021, the company was fined 200,000 yuan for publishing an ad in which a comedian endorsed a lingerie brand and made statements that allegedly objectified women.

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