Believing that the only way to govern China is with authoritarian rule, the Communist Party leadership is always on the lookout for “subversive content,” material that can undermine the moral values they’ve set down. Music–especially that which comes from foreign sources–is a big concern.
Effective in 2016, streaming services, torrent websites and other sources of online music will be required to use some pretty intense processes designed to filter out banned material–or “morally damming” [sic] influences. Alibaba, Baidu and Tencent, China’s three biggest web companies, will be up first as the Communist Party seeks to cleanse the Internet for its people.
This means that these companies will have to sort through millions and millions of songs, erasing or blocking ones that don’t make the PRC’s official standards, songs that could (in the government’s eyes) hurt the political stability of China. Also affected will be Apple, which tentatively launched Apple Music in China. Spotify wants to be in the country, but this isn’t going to help.
You might remember how back in August 120 songs, most of the hip hop variety, were banned from the country. This list is bound to grow.