Bilibili bans livestreaming of tripple-A games to comply with China's tighter regulations on gaming content

Aron Chen

posted on January 12, 2022 10:25 pm

Bilbili, a Chinese video streaming platform known for its content targeting younger audiences, has banned live-streaming of dozens of triple-A games to comply with the country’s tighter rules on gaming contents.

Triple A games like Grand Theft Auto series, Battlefield 3 and 4, Biohazard, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare, The Witcher 3, Tom Clancy’s Rainbow Six Siege are among nearly 90 games to be banned by Bilibili.

“In order to comply with guidelines from the Ministry of Culture and other authorities, Bilibili will prohibit the live-streaming of games which contain violent, bloody and pornographic content,” Bilibili explained the decision making in a statement.

Bilibili has gradually reduced its alliance on mobile games by making consistent investments in a more diversified model to bring in more revenue streams, but mobile games still remain its biggest revenue contributor with 27% of the total revenue in the third quarter.

Bilibili is no longer a niche platform that focus on vertical market- anime, comics, and games (ACG) and it now covers a wide range of contents including fashion, lifestyle, beauty, music and technology. However, gaming-related video content still remain one of most popular content on the platform.

According to statistics released by Bilibili, its users spent around 5 million hours in total on more than 24 million video contents in 2021.

China has been increasing its scrutiny of the country’s online entertainment content in an effort to create a healthier online environment for netizens especially minors.

Previously, the National Radio and Television Administration issued new rules to ban minors from spending money in live streams. The rules also require livestreaming hosts and gift givers on livestreaming platform to register their real names.

In August, Chinese authorities also implemented a new rule that limit gaming time to only three hours per week for minors. In response, many gaming firm’s rollout out facial recognition tools to scan players’ face that restrict kids from playing games at night.

The sets of new regulation aim to solve increasing complaints of Chinese parents about kids spending in games.

The cases of kid’s unauthorized online spending have generated a big debate about whether current laws on minors spending money online are sufficient.

According to Black Cat, one of most used consumer service and complaint resolution platform in China, parents filed surging complaints about the facts that their children charged excessive amounts of virtual items purchases to parent’s debit or credit cards without consent, accused gaming companies and live-streaming platform of luring children in with addictive attractions and blurring the between free and chargeable items.

In these complaints, parents cited that the companies didn’t provide any warning that purchases could be made without requiring a password every time. When parents approved a one-time purchase and entered their passwords, most of them were unaware that their child could continue to make purchases for short-time plays without additional authorization.