BUSINESS Sina Weibo kicks out executive in charge of public relations for taking bribes

BUSINESS

Sina Weibo kicks out executive in charge of public relations for taking bribes

Global Times

19:06, August 10, 2021

Sina (Photo: VCG)

Mao Taotao, former senior public relations director at Sina Weibo, one of the most popular social media platforms in China, was fired and blocked from future employment, as he was detained by police on suspicion of accepting bribes and committing fraud, Sina said in a statement on Tuesday.

Mao was suspected of taking advantages of his position in accepting bribes, placing him in direct conflict of Sina's commercial interests, the Beijing Daily reported on Tuesday, citing a statement issued by Sina's human resources department.

In addition to Mao's fraud, a growing number of corruption cases across the internet industry have accelerated the anti-corruption process, the paper.cn reported on Tuesday.

Zhao Danyang, a former vice-president at Kuaishou, was arrested for alleged corruption in February, while several other cases involving a number of tech companies were reported this year.

To cope with the rising corruption cases, some internet companies have initiated to set up their own anti-corruption mechanisms.

Alibaba has set a special department targeting corruption and fraud in 2012, with other tech giants have also established special task forces to look into allegations of corporate corruption.

Sina is currently assisting the police with the investigation, said the company.

The net business revenue of Sina Weibo reached $458.90 million during the first quarter of 2021, an increase of 42 percent year-over-year, according to Weibo's financial results for the quarter. Advertising and marketing revenues were $390 million, up 42 percent.

Monthly active users have hovered at 530 million, with average daily active users at 230 million in March, a decrease of 4 percent and 5 percent year-over-year, respectively.

Sina Weibo announced the suspension of a platform function which ranks entertainers (pop stars) through fan voting on Friday. The move came after a campaign launched by the Chinese internet regulator to reform the country's fan club culture, by mobilizing the while society to ferret out unhealthy fan culture.

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