China Cracks Down on ASMR Videos Because They are ‘Harmful’ and ‘Pornographic’
China’s anti-pornography office announced on June 8 that video streaming services in the country must “thoroughly clean up vulgar and pornographic ASMR content.”
The Chinese government stated that websites need to “clean up” and law enforcement agencies must hand out punishment to offenders, according to The Verge.
“A large part of ASMR audiences is young people,” the statement reads. “All internet companies must genuinely fulfill their duties, and increase efforts to clean up websites, implement content review processes, and protect minors from harmful content.”
ASMR (Autonomous Sensory Meridian Response) videos include people whispering, tapping or gently rubbing a microphone, or eating foods to relax the listener.
ASMR has been described as an “in-skull orgasm” by many Chinese netizens because of the sexual images displayed in some videos, Abacus News reported.
While it can have sexual content, the ASMR community has tried to steer away from that aspect.
The community has seen growth around the world in recent years.
A 2015 research paper and study revealed that 82% of participants in the United States and Western Europe use ASMR to help them go to sleep, while 70% use them to lower stress, and only 5% said they consume ASMR for sexual stimulation.
Several streaming services such as Youku, Bilibili, and Douyu have deleted all ASMR videos from their sites since the anti-pornography office announced its new guidelines.
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