The Ministry of Culture announced Tuesday that it will ban access to online video games in which players act as gangsters or members of mafia organizations, Reuters reported, citing state media. A ministry report said that the games "advocate obscenity, gambling, or violence" and "undermine morality and Chinese traditional culture." China has 200 million online video game players, and games glamorizing gangsterism and violence such as "Godfather" are particularly popular. The online game industry in China is expected to grow by between 30% to 50% this year, logging sales revenues between US$3.51 billion and US$3.95 billion. The new ban is part of a wider push to clean up the internet in advance of the 60th anniversary of the founding of the People’s Republic of China. Pornographic and dissident sites have also been shut down.
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