MALAYSIA — Recently, a screenshot of a Malaysian children’s workbook circulated online, causing amusement among netizens.
The screenshot appears to have been taken from a children’s workbook that asked students to identify their family tree, including grandparents, parents, and children.
However, the content seems to be problematic as it suggests that a male couple formed a family and raised four children.
The screenshot went viral online, and netizens made fun of the workbook’s error for allegedly promoting “same-sex marriage” and a “harmony family.”
Some netizens admitted to scrutinizing the picture for a while before discovering the blunder, while others mocked the publisher for promoting a “Man United” idea.
A netizen seized the opportunity to make a pun by linking the rainbow symbol to a Malaysian reference book publisher named “Rainbow.”:
“Family could have adopted their children”
Some comment suggested that the family could have adopted their children and still loved them like their own, thereby making them a family regardless of gender:
Original screenshot circulated eight years ago, publisher apologised
The screenshot in question is part of an exercise book for Primary Four History subject and was initially circulated online in 2015.
Bagus Publishing Sdn Bhd, the publisher responsible for the book containing errors on the page about “Harmony Family,” apologised at that time and withdrew their book for replacement.
When asked how the mistake occurred, the publisher’s representative stated that the error resulted from the printing computer format.
“We did not intentionally make a mistake in the ‘computer settings’ that resulted in the image of two men appearing,” she explained.
In Malaysia, LGBTQ promotion is not common, and same-sex marriage is not widely accepted.
Activists are still struggling to challenge society’s misconceptions and persuade authorities to end discrimination against this group.