To Publish Or Not To Publish. Online.

Featured image: Contact Magazine

 

China Fashion Find: Jing Daily on February 26 asks itself “how China’s new foreign media ban may cause a pickle for fashion magazines”. Whether it’s the Great Firewall (the New York Times does not exist — nor does anything else that unable to penetrate The Wall) or China’s State Administration of Press, Publication, Radio, Film, and Television, foreign publications have had to jump through many Marie-Antoinette hoops to gain entrance to that possible-sales-numbers-tempting Chinese market for as long as we can remember. As China has been closing its doors again over the past few years (oh yes Sir, just ask any expat living and working there), probably as stipulated by Deng Xiaoping and compadres of the non-fashionable-yet-elitist-set back in 1982 already, this new regulation is the latest prohibiting action in a line of many. Unlike the AW16 collections, China’s censorship is nothing new. Plus, perhaps President Xi Jinping and posse prefer to see only home-grown design on their hangers.

 

“A new Chinese government regulation that bans foreign companies from publishing content online has spurred a discussion of its implications for news sites, but many fashion magazines as well as foreign companies involved with content production are also considering what it means for them,” Jing Daily reports.

 

The new, and unfortunately ambiguously detailed in terms of actually possible effects, rules take effect on March 10. This means Sino-foreign joint ventures , Sino-foreign cooperative ventures (e.g. Vogue China, published by Condé Nast and China Pictorial Publishing House) and other foreign business units must no longer engage in online publishing services.

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“Sino-foreign joint ventures , Sino-foreign cooperative ventures and other foreign business units must no longer engage in online publishing services.”

 

“There technically won’t be a complete ban on foreign media, as foreign firms are permitted under the new regulations to cooperate with Chinese companies on ‘projects’ if they receive approval from China’s State Administration of Press, Publication, Radio, Film, and Television. The wording, however, is decidedly ambiguous and does not define the nature of a ‘project’ or how it will be evaluated,” Jing Daily concludes.

 

After all is said and done, just not online, I must admit that when it comes to fashion publications… I opt for the touch of a hard-copy glossy; fashion is all in the fingers. And on a sprightlier note, the clothing-meets-modeling industry is much-scrutinized either way, so perhaps this particular publishing field won’t suffer too greatly from the hoopla.