China’s troubled TV star – Eanna O’Brogain

From the South China Morning Post, via Asia Media (link):

Imagine you’re a star to more than a billion people in the Chinese-speaking world. Your shows are beamed into millions of households every week, and your ego likes it. But step out of your Asian backyard, and everybody thinks you’re a closed-circuit television service. That’s what happens when you call yourself .

This identity problem is just one of the issues being addressed by bosses at China Central Television in its bid to keep up with the media Joneses. Although it holds the powerful mantle of state broadcaster — and has the broadest reach of any one TV station in a country of 1.3 billion people — not all is well at Beijing’s No11 Fuxing Lu.

While the station may hold a number of global records, including the gong for the most-widely watched TV programme on the planet — the annual Spring Festival Gala — a number of problems loom: the quality and reach of provincial TV programming is growing, government-imposed restrictions are hampering creativity and advertisers are starting to give bigger slices of their annual pie to the competition.

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