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China’s Twitter rival banned from streaming video

WeiboChinese regulators have ruled that three of the countries major internet groups much stop streaming audio and video services as part of a drive by the country’s authorities to restrict the availability of online content.

The ban on streaming has been placed on microblogging site Sina Weibo, news portal iFeng and video streaming platform ACFUN.

Sina Weibo, which surpassed Twitter in market capitalisation earlier this year, lost about US$1 billion (€900 million) in value on the NASDAQ exchange following the move.

Chinese media regulator the SAPPRFT said that the three groups did not have licences to stream audio and video content.

Sina Weibo, like Twitter, has invested heavily in video streaming capability. The company has a deal in place with the US national Football League to stream live content on its platform.

The SAPPFRT did not reveal a timetable for the removal of audiovisual content and did not say whether the ban would be permanent.