Cocoa site under fire after sending “Guide to Self-Censorship for Inappropriate Content” to its Webtoon + web novel publishers in light of its sales partnership with China

According to industry insiders on September 29th Cocoa entertainment‘s popular webtoon and web novel platform’Cocoa side‘recently received a notice from its key content publishing partners with a’Guide to self-censorship for inappropriate content‘.

On September 27th, Kakao Entertainment launched a Webtoon and Web-Novel distribution service called PODO Manhua In a relationship with JV, a content platform among China Tencent stocks. Typically, overseas companies wishing to offer their services and content in China have to enter into distribution partnerships with Chinese companies to comply with government regulations.

It has now been reported that a few days before the launch of PODO Manhua in China, some content publishing partners received a notice asking them to “censor” SNS activities or public statements by authors before their work was published.

According to the “Guide to Self-Censorship for Inappropriate Content”, the following topics can be considered “inappropriate” in China:

1. Supporting the independence of Taiwan, Hong Kong and Tibet 2. Abusive speeches or actions that mock the citizens of China 3. Supporting media and journalism that make relations between Korea and China difficult or China’s relations with another country 4. Exaggerate, distort or mocking historical truths or defamation of patriotic martyrs 5. Expressing public opinion on culturally sensitive issues, including Korean-Chinese conflicts over cultural artifacts

Industry insiders alleged that Kakao Page requested the “prevention, censorship, editing and deletion” of content that could fall under the above categories of SNS accounts or authors’ public activity. Many content publishers who received the notice from Kakao Page responded with the comment: “This is incomprehensible.”

Meanwhile, Kakao Entertainment officials are currently insisting that in light of the Chinese government’s recent crackdown on domestic and imported media, they will only “pass on” information they have received from Tencent. Representatives claimed, “There have been cases where publications had to be removed from the services due to various issues, so it was our intention to provide a guide for reference to ensure that such issues do not adversely affect our authors.”

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