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Screenshot from Tsai's video

MDA “advised” local broadcasters not to air pro-gay song

Screenshot from Tsai's video
Screenshot from Tsai's video

In response to queries about the recent reported ban on a song by Taiwanese singer, Jolin Tsai, the Media Development Authority of Singapore (MDA) told the media on Tuesday that the song is not banned in Singapore.

The song in question, "We're all different, yet the same", depicts the relationship of two women who, in one scene, engage in a kiss with each other.

Media reports in Hong Kong and Taiwan said that the song has been banned in Singapore, a claim which the MDA has now denied.

It said that “Ms Tsai’s song is allowed in Singapore with the requisite age rating and consumer advice", according to a Straits Times' report.

However, the MDA seems to also have confirmed that the song is indeed banned in Singapore.

The MDA statement to the media said:

“In response to recent queries on the suitability of the song for broadcast, MDA advised the local broadcasters that they should not air the song and music video on channels that are freely accessed by younger viewers due to its mature content. This decision was reached after consultation with MDA’s Publications Consultative Panel, which comprises Singaporeans from a wide cross-section of society."

The MDA did not seem to have elaborated on what these "channels what are freely accessed by younger viewers" are.

It also did not indicate what the "mature content" in the video is.

The song is easily available online on Youtube, and has been shared numerous times since news emerged of the ban several days ago.

Ms Tsai herself was reported to have said that she was disappointed with the ban, as she was only showing her support for equal rights to marriage for gay people through her music.

The Singapore Government has criminalised gay sex between adult males, and under the MDA's Free-to Air Television Programme Code, it states that “Music associated with drugs, alternative lifestyles (e.g. homosexuality) or the worship of the occult or the devil should not be broadcast.”

Almost one year ago, the MDA had also banned the performance of another song by another Taiwanese singer, Ah Mei, in Singapore.

See here: "“A-Mei” told not to sing her song at music festival due to inappropriate content".

Here's Jolin Tsai's video which is discouraged from being aired by the MDA: