China bans drug-using celebrities from the airwaves

Jackie Chan (right) poses with his son Jaycee in 2009 outside Beijing's "Bird's Nest" Olympic Stadium.

Story highlights

  • Celebrities who use drugs or prostitutes are banned, says China's media watchdog
  • The ban applies to their previous works as well, says the statement
  • China has launched a crackdown on vice this year, targeting drugs and the sex industry
  • A number of celebrities have been caught up in drug raids
Celebrities who have been caught using drugs or frequenting prostitutes have been banned from China's airwaves, according to state media, as a national crackdown on vice widens.
The order was issued to media outlets by the State Administration of Press, Publication, Radio, Film and Television, China's media watchdog, according to the state-run China Daily.
It said that entertainers who broke the law would not be invited to appear on shows, and that their previous work should not be aired. The ruling applies to TV and radio shows, films and advertising across multiple platforms.
The ban would help "spread positive energy" and "create a positive environment" on media platforms, the watchdog said in its statement.
The announcement comes as China's government pushes ahead with a war on drugs, gambling and prostitution.
In February, police raided 2,000 establishments and detained more than 900 people in Dongguan, a southern Chinese city that had gained a reputation as "sin city" for its thriving sex industry.
And last month the Ministry of Public Security announced a new round of crackdowns on the production and sale of drugs in 108 cities, China Daily reported.
Celebrity busts
A number of celebrities have been caught up in the raids. In August, 32-year-old actor Jaycee Chan, the son of screen legend Jackie Chan, was arrested alongside 23-year-old Taiwanese actor Kai Ko in Beijing on drugs charges. Both tested positive for marijuana.
Singer Li Daimo was sentenced to nine months in jail for hosting a crystal meth party at his home, according to the China Daily, while screenwriter and novelist Chen Wanning, known as Ning Caishen, was detained for possessing and using methamphetamine.
In August, management agencies representing entertainers in Beijing signed an agreement with authorities banning drug use from the industry, and pledging to drop stars who broke the law.
News of the ban spread quickly on Chinese social media. On one unofficial poll on the Twitter-like Sina Weibo service, 84% of respondents supported the ban, while 16% were opposed.
"Artists have a broad influence. (Their behavior) will have a bad influence on juveniles, especially their fans. So I think this is great," wrote Weibo user @Xiaomanzu.
Others disagreed.
"Whether (they) can return to showbiz should depend on the market... Enforcing the ban is totally acting like a dictator," wrote @Miamia_wodexingxingkai.