The Chinese government is said to be working on new rules that require owners of closed platforms like WeChat and Douyin to make articles and videos on their platform indexable to search engines. The Chinese government wants to get rid of the “walled gardens” of tech companies.
The Chinese government argues, by making articles and photos indexable on closed platforms, these companies should be given less power According to Bloomberg. Since they are less able to keep users within their platform, a portion of their ad revenue will go to search engines like Baidu.
This includes articles on WeChat, Tencent’s chat app with public profiles that media can post to. It’s also about Douyin, the Chinese equivalent of TikTok from ByteDance. Both systems are currently closed to search engine crawlers, which prevents results from those applications from appearing in search engines.
China’s Ministry of Information Technology is asking companies what they think of such a plan and its technical feasibility. It remains unclear whether the plan will come to fruition. The Chinese government wants to tear down the walls between the tech giants, as they seem to have become the sole rulers of their field. Alibaba controls e-commerce, Tencent controls the chat market with WeChat and ByteDance controls the short video market with Douyin. Last month, the Chinese government has already banned Block links to competitors.
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