In a now-removed Weibo post, a writer who scripts for comedy shows said a company that had approached her last year sent her a long list of taboo topics. It included senior Party leaders, officials, extra-marital affairs, homosexuality, gambling, poverty and the pandemic. Then there were a series of meetings to discuss the potential impact of the jokes – how sensitive was it? Who might it offend ? The scripts were then submitted to relevant departments, but officials wouldn’t say much, or even make clear suggestions.