Amazon Prime Video has just launched in India, and have started on the wrong foot by censoring 30 minutes from an episode of The Grand Tour.
The fourth episode of The Grand Tour is listed as only 30 minutes in India, as opposed to the normal one hour. That's so that all references to a car made of meat could be excised from the show. It seems that India is a little meat sensitive for
It is reported that Amazon have made frequent recourse to blurring to censor more straightforward censorship issues such as nudity and other sexual content. Amazon are also quick to reach for the annoying bleep button when strong language is in
The Amazon self censorship is a little confusing as this week, the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting clarified that it has no plans to censor online streaming services.
The US moralist campaign group, Parents Television Council have kindly been hyping a new TV comedy series to be shown on ABC.
Written by Nick Thune and frequent collaborator Kevin Parker Flynn, Holy Sh*t follows the staff of a struggling church and their edgy new pastor (Nick Thune) as they fight to survive in the modern world.
The morality campaigners have issued a press releasing whingeing about the title. The group writes:
The Parents Television Council haveurged ABC to reconsider using profanity in the title of a TV show in development, Holy Sh*t . PTC President Tim Winter spouted:
ABC's primetime programs have become a home for explicit, vulgar, and sexualized language, and this new show's title is yet more evidence that Disney-owned ABC is going in the wrong direction. Beyond whether the vulgar title would run afoul of
the broadcast indecency law, it's absurd that ABC would even consider exposing children to this explicit program title. While parents may steer their family viewing away from the program itself, the title would appear on program guides,
marketing materials, and in network promos when families are watching other ABC programming.
Surely, ABC should have learned from experience that using profanity in a show title won't ensure a program's financial success. ABC and CBS have each attempted to use profanity in a program title and both attempts resulted in advertiser
embargoes, and in only one season of each of those shows.
With ABC Entertainment President Channing Dungey saying just last week that 'in recent history we haven't paid enough attention to some of the true realities of what life is like for everyday Americans in our dramas,' we have to wonder why ABC
would immediately alienate those families with this show title.
ABC should immediately change the title in order to protect children from this explicit language.
TV censors of the Pakistan Media Regulatory Authority (Pemra) have banned at least 11 Christian TV channels being run across the country.
The channels which have been blocked are Isaac TV, Gawahi TV, God Bless TV, Barkat TV, Praise TV, Zindagi TV, Shine TV, Jesus TV (Jessi TV), Healing TV, Khushkhabari TV, and Catholic TV , sources said. All the channels relayed religious
programmes for Christians living in the country.
Pemra claimed the censorship was because the banned channels were broadcasting without licences but that was probably down to christian channels not being allowed to have licenses.
These TV channels are banned in line with ongoing Pemra campaign to ban illegal channels, Sheikh Tahir, the regulator's general manager media, told The Express Tribune . He said the blocked TV channels did not have licences to continue
Pemra seeks ministry's help in enforcing Indian DTH ban
In response to a question that why only Christian TV channels were banned, Sheikh Tahir, the Pemra's general manager medias claimed there was no segregation in the name of religion.
Talking to The Express Tribune , Nadim Anthony, a Christian advocate and rights activist, termed it a blow to the Christian minority of the country. Anthony said the blocked channels had a huge viewership, through which community members took
religious guidance. He added:
There are so many Islamic TV channels functioning in the country but no one can dare ban them, which is discrimination.
Morality in Media are gushing over a new HBO TV series Westworld based n the novel by Michael Chrichton. The campaign group writes:
HBO is building a legacy of rape culture entertainment. The new HBO series, Westworld , premiered Sunday night and wasted no time before building upon this new great tradition in television of commodifying and consuming the female body.
The first episode of HBO's latest series, Westworld , contains a reference to the raping of a corpse, uses brothels as a backdrop for full frontal nudity, and includes a disturbing rape scene.
Why does HBO insist on making sadistic themes of sexual violence against women the key ingredient in its entertainment formula? No corporation that so regularly promotes the degradation and abuse of the female body can respect women.
Actress Evan Rachel Wood spoke out about the violence against women in Westworld. She stated:
We don't actually show any violence against women, although it is implied...(Co-creator) Lisa (Joy) was very passionate about not showing gratuitous violence against women and I think the reason why it's in the show is to push us to take a look
at ourselves and humanity and why this sort of thing is an epidemic that people get pleasure out of.
Of course, there is nothing implied about a scene in which a woman is brutally struck across the face--not once, but twice--and grabbed her by the back of her dress and literally dragged dozens of feet across the ground while she screams
in terror. If being hit, a drug off screaming isn't violence against women I don't know what is.
While it's true that Westworld did not explicitly show the rape scene (making it marginally less offensive than Game of Thrones ) the makers of Westworld are kidding themselves if they believe they're providing social commentary on
violence against women in the media. Rather than providing insightful, empathetic, narrative around these themes, Westworld uses them for the end of titillation and entertainment.
New Zealand's government is set to introduce a Digital Convergence Bill which will extend the Broadcasting Act to cover on-demand content.
That will have implications for the way services such as Spark internet television service Lightbox and Netflix classify their programmes. The classification of broadcast and on-demand content would be handled the same way under the Broadcasting
Act, with complaints handled by the Broadcasting Standards Authority (BSA).
The new censorship regime will not extent to news and current affairs or to user-generated content such as videos uploaded by the public.
The bill will also introduce an exclusion to the current blanket ban on TV advertising between the hours of 6am and noon on Sundays. Adverts will soon be allowed but only during special events s uch as the Rugby World Cup.
The theory behind the Sunday morning ad-ban has been that it encourages broadcasters to show low audience special interest programming such as religious programmes without concern that they may be missing out on larger audiences that would
be of interest to advertisers.
The political party, Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf, has submitted a resolution in the Punjab Assembly calling for a TV ban on famous Japanese anime series Doraemon.
The cartoon revolves around a robotic cat named Doraemon and a young boy Nobita. It is aired on various cartoon channels and has been dubbed in Hindi for viewers in Pakistan and India.
PTI legislator Malik Taimoor Masood urged Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority (Pemra) to impose a ban on Doraemon or limit its airtime as he claimed it contains explicit content which has a bad impact on children. He argued that
24-hour cartoon channels are adversely affecting the educational and physical growth of children.
The resolution, which will be discussed in the next assembly session, claims the language used in cartoons run on channels is damaging societal norms.
An Indian educationalist. Ashish Chaturvedi, is also seeking a ban of Doraemon citing media reports highlighting supposed mental abuse and other serious adverse impact of cartoons on kids. He said that dubbed violent cartoons are grappling
a whole generation of kids across India and the world.
The US morality campaign group, Parents Television Council, has had a whinge at a new VH1 series, Dating Naked. Of course viewers never get to see anybody naked, only pixellisation.
The Parents TV Council is attacking the show via its advertisers and write:
The Parents Television Council is urging its members and the public to contact Samsung and Sprint to reconsider advertising support for a sexually-explicit dating show that's rated for children as young as 14.
Both companies sponsored the first two episodes of VH1's Dating Naked, a reality show in which the contestants are completely naked all the time. VH1 rated the episode TV-14, meaning that VH1 execs believe that it is acceptable for 14-year-olds
to watch. PTC President Tim Winter said:
Most parents would be shocked to find their young teenagers watching this sexually-explicit nude dating show. But VH1, in all its wisdom, believes this kind of content is appropriate for middle school and high school aged children. Samsung and
Sprint must agree, given their ad buys on the first two episodes and despite our warnings about the content ahead of time. Surely, parents will take pause at these companies for sponsoring 'Dating Naked,' and at VH1 for marketing this nude
reality show to their children.
Most of the sponsors from last week's episode chose not to return this week, and for that we are grateful. But companies like Samsung and Sprint chose to align their corporate brands with the loathsome content on Dating Naked. Teen-targeted explicit programming would not exist but for corporate sponsors that support them with their ad dollars. As such, we are urging our members and public to contact these companies to express their concerns.
Later Parents Television Council scored a further wind when advertisers pulled out. Mondelez, Hhgregg and Henkel told VH1 to stop running their ads during the reality show.
Mondelez said in an email to the PTC
We have specific guidelines in place to help steward our media spend, which should prevent our ads from appearing in this type of programming Mondeleez International did not purchase this program specifically and has not previously aired ads on
the program. In keeping with our policy, we have directed our media partner to ensure that we do not run advertising for any of our brands on this program in the future.
Out of an abundance of caution, we have also requested a programming schedule for rotation buys to ensure that the specific programs are acceptable to Mondeleez International.
Our buying guidelines are very specific in terms of program content, precluding the inclusion of shows that feature the kind of gratuitous sexuality in 'Dating Naked.' Unfortunately, errors do occasionally occur and our spot mistakenly ran
within the program. We have informed VH1 that this program, and all similar programming on their network, is to be specifically eliminated from all current and future hhgregg television buys.
Shooter , a US TV drama about a sniper has been postponed after the Dallas sniper attack.
The series, which stars Ryan Phillippe as an expert marksman, was due to start on 19th July. But a spokesperson for the USA Network told the Hollywood Reporter:
In light of recent tragic events and out of respect for the victims, their families and our viewers, we have decided to postpone the premiere date for the upcoming USA Network series Shooter to July 26.
Phillippe, who is also a producer of the show, plays Bob Lee Swagger, an expert marksman, who is persuaded to return to work for a clandestine operation by his former commanding officer played by Omar Epps.
Italian stete broadcaster, RAI, cut hot scenes between two men when showing the American legal TV thriller How To Get Away With Murder ( HTGAWM).
The cuts were revealed in a side-by-side comparison shared on Twitter by an Italian viewer. Rai 2 had edited out the flashback cutaway that revealed how Connor came to possess, via his very first hook-up with Oliver, some documents Annalise
needed for a court case.
Upon learning of the edit, HTGAWM programme maker Pete Nowalk expressed on Twitter that he was shocked and disappointed, then set out to share a clip of the scene as it was meant to be seen.
Ilaria Dallatana, director of Rai 2 made excuses and explained that a female editor made the edits without his supervision, and that the episode would be rebroadcast in its entirety on Sunday night. She said in a (translated) statement:
There was no censorship, merely an excess of modesty due to individual sensitivity of those involved to package the edition of the series for the first time. I understand the irritation...These controversies help us to take the right steps for
the future. As demonstrated by the choices made for the new schedules, RAI-2 will be increasingly sensitive to the complexities of the contemporary world
Kenya's new TV censorship code for free-to-air radio and television broadcasting services in Kenya came into force at midnight on 1st July 2016.
Radio and TV broadcasters were now required to transmit programming appropriate for family audiences from 5am to 10pm.
Communications Authority of Kenya (CA) director general Francis Wangusi said in a statement the new code set standards for the time and manner of programmes to be broadcast by licensees. He said:
Licensees are therefore discouraged from airing content that depicts or contains scenes that are rated by the Kenya Film Classification Board as adult, or are of a language intended for adult audiences during the watershed period.
The code also set out the minimum amount of airtime to be devoted to local content with TV broadcasters expected to meet the 40 percent local content quota within the first year, and 60 percent within the fourth year of commencement of
The code equally required broadcasters to take specific steps to promote the understanding and enjoyment of programmes transmitted by their stations by persons with disability in line with article 54 of the constitution that guaranteed persons
with disability the right of reasonable access to information.
Other key provisions of the code included protecting the rights to privacy and safeguarding intellectual property rights of content producers. It also facilitated access to balanced and unbiased news and other programming.
A complaints handling procedure sets out steps in resolving broadcast content-related complaints. The procedure required consumers to lodge complaints with the offending broadcaster first and only escalate complaints that had not been adequately
addressed by licensees to the authority.
Channel 4's Sex Box has been axed from New Zealand TV2's new line-up.
TVNZ responded to a petition with over 10,000 signatories and ditched plans to screen a controversial British reality TV show in which participants had sex during the programme.
TVNZ said that they were responding to the feedback the network had received about the show, and agreed that after taking a closer look at Sex Box the show was not the right fit for the public broadcaster. A spokesman added:
We typically get a range of viewer opinions expressed about our on-air and online content. Not everyone will agree with every decision we make but we do listen
An online petition launched by Ann-Maree Quinn to see TV2 axe the show has been signed by 10,184 prudes. The petition read:
Yet another bizarre reality TV show to occupy our screens, but this one is particularly troubling on a number of levels. It is not prudish to object to Sex Box. Some things ought not to be for sale, ought not to be promoted with evocative
storylines, solely to grow viewership.
Some things simply require a level of good taste and decency. Sexual intimacy is not just a recreational activity to be viewed, scored and analysed in such a public setting,
Gay issues seem to be slipping down the political correctness pecking order, perhaps with gay discrimination dropping below religious discrimination. Even Sweden is now censoring gay relationships on TV, perhaps to avoid 'offending' their
newly arrived refugees.
Swedish authorities have just been caught censoring a brewing lesbian romance between two main characters in an episode of popular Cartoon Network show Steven Universe.
Steven Universe, which premiered in 2013 in the US on Cartoon Network, revolves around the fictional Beach City where a boy called Steven hangs out with his friends, who are Crystal Gems who can fuse to create more powerful characters. In
particular Ruby and Sapphire are both female gems and are very much in love with one another.
The Swedish-dubbed version of the show's episode Hit the Diamond about a baseball match has been censored to mute some of the romantic dialogue between Ruby and Sapphire. Eg removing the lines:
Ruby: Just look at the ball -- Titter på bollen (Just look at the ball)
Sapphire: I'm trying, but all I wanna look at is you -- Jag försöker, jag har problem med koncentrationen ( I'm trying, I have problems with concentration)
Ruby: Do not worry, you can look at me when you're running for home -- Ingen fara, fokusera på segern när du springer runt (No worries, focus on victory when you run)
The censored conversation prompted an angry reaction. A 1300 signature petition saw the dubbing as:
An active choice to censor the relationship that Ruby and Sapphire have?¦
This happens in 2016 in Sweden, a country that is known worldwide for being progressive in its views and accepting of LGBTQ+ people.
If the two female characters are in love in the original show, there is no reason that we in Sweden would change this relationship.
The authors demanded that Cartoon Network issues a written promise never to censor Ruby and Sapphire's relationship in their translation or otherwise, as well as to stop mistranslating occasions when these two female characters show love for each
Cartoon Network confirmed that the censorship was a local intervention and is not attributable to the US branch.
A new legislative proposal amending the AVMSD has been adopted by the European Commission on 25 May 2016. The reform brings the Directive in line with the new realities. Share A media framework for the 21st century
Viewers, and particularly minors, are moving from traditional TV to the online world, while the regulatory burden is much higher on TV. The Directive therefore introduces flexibility when restrictions only applicable to TV are no longer
justified. At the same time, it ensures that consumers will be sufficiently protected in the on-demand and Internet world. This is done while making sure that innovation will not be stifled.
The idea is to achieve a balance between competitiveness and consumer protection.
The main new elements of the proposal are summarised below:
The Country of origin principle (COO)
COO is a cornerstone of the Directive . It will be maintained and facilitated by:
simplifying the rules which determine the country having jurisdiction over a provider,
establishing an obligation on Member States to inform about what providers are under their jurisdiction and maintaining an up-to-date database to ensure transparency,
clarifying cooperation procedures between Member States regarding permissible limitations to COO.
The proposed modifications aim at reducing the burden of TV broadcasters while maintaining, and even reinforcing those rules seeking to protect the most vulnerable. For example, the revised AVMSD:
maintains the strict 20% limit on advertising time, but gives broadcasters more flexibility as to when ads can be shown,
it allows more flexibility in putting product placement and sponsorship,
it encourages the adoption of self- and co-regulation for the existing rules seeking to protect the most vulnerable (alcohol advertising, fatty food, minors, etc.).
Promotion of European works
The proposed modifications aim at enhancing the promotion of European works by:
allowing MS to impose financial contributions to providers of on-demand services established in other MS (but only on the turnover generated in the imposing country),
putting on-demand players under the obligation to promote European content to a limited level by imposing a minimum quota obligations (20% share of the audiovisual offer of their catalogues) and an obligation to give prominence to European
works in their catalogues,
low turnover companies, thematic services and small and micro enterprises are exempted from these requirements.
Prohibition of hate speech
The grounds for prohibiting hate speech will be aligned to those of the Framework Decision on combating certain forms and expressions of racism and xenophobia ( Decision 2008/913/JHA ). This prohibits incitement to violence and hatred directed
against a group of persons or a member of such a group defined by reference to sex, race, colour, religion, descent or national or ethnic origin.
Protection of Minors
The proposed modifications aim at simplifying the obligation to protect minors against harmful content. It now says that everything that 'may be harmful' should be restricted on all services. The most harmful content shall be subject to the
strictest measures, such as PIN codes and encryption. This will apply also to on-demand services.
Member States shall ensure that audiovisual media service providers provide sufficient information to viewers about harmful content to minors. For this purpose, Member States may use a system of descriptors indicating the nature of the content
of an audiovisual media service.
Video-sharing platforms will be included in the scope of the AVMSD only when it comes to combat hate speech and dissemination of harmful content to minors.
Platforms which organise and tag a large quantity of videos will have to protect minors from harmful content and to protect all citizens from incitement to hatred, based on new EU-specific terms in the revised AVMSD. Fully in line with the
ecommerce Directive , this builds on existing efforts by the industry and will be implemented by co-regulation.
The Audiovisual Regulators
The independence of audiovisual regulators will be enshrined into EU law by ensuring that they are legally distinct and functionally independent from the industry and government (eg they do not seek nor take instructions), operate in a
transparent and accountable manner which is set out in a law and have sufficient powers.
ERGA (The European Regulators Group for Audiovisual Media Services)
ERGA will have a bigger role in shaping and preserving the internal market, for example in assessing EU co-regulatory codes and will take part in the procedures derogating from the country of origin.
The role of the European Regulators Group for Audiovisual Media Services (ERGA) will be set out in EU legislation.
Once adopted by the European Commission, the legislative proposal is sent to the European Parliament and to the Council.
There are positive messages in the document, but also some problematic ones. CDT has consistently pushed back on proposals that would endanger the internet as an enabler of free expression, public debate, and access to information.
Game The campaign group Morality in Media now calls itself The National Center on Sexual Exploitation. For some reason the group feels compelled to whinge about the incredibly popular TV sensation, Game of Thrones :
The National Center on Sexual Exploitation (NCOSE) held a press conference calling on HBO executives to stop promoting pornified entertainment in the TV series Game of Thrones. Dawn Hawkins, Executive Director of the National Center on
Sexual Exploitation said:
Game of Thrones has excelled in turning brutal sexual violence into mainstream entertainment,. Since 2011, HBO has relentlessly brought the ambiance of torture pornography into American living rooms through Game of Thrones' explicit depictions
of rape, incest, prostitution, and sexual violence. This cocktail of pornography and twisted plot lines must be denounced as socially irresponsible, especially in an age when American society is struggling to combat the crises of sexual assault
and rape culture.
While the 6th season premiere refrained from explicit sexually violent content due to backlash from the last season's gratuitous rape scenes, one episode does not constitute a trend -- the show runners must consistently work to prove that Game
of Thrones is no longer dedicated to normalizing sexual violence, Hawkins continued. Some associated with the Game of Thrones franchise have claimed that scenes depicting sexual violence merely represent real-to-life, historic scenarios, but it
is clear that the show's creators are fixated on producing unjustifiably sexually graphic scenes, Hawkins continued. In stark contrast, films like The Shawshank Redemption and The Color Purple manage to convey the gravity of rape
in a plotline without exploiting it in a way that is salacious or dehumanizing. Game of Thrones, however, has consistently crossed the line of decency by grotesquely depicting rape, incest, prostitution, and sexual violence in a manner that
turns viewers into vicarious participants. For its incessant themes of sexual violence, Game of Thrones would be more aptly named Shame of Thrones.
The Turkish embassy is attempting to censor a Swedish channel broadcast pf a documentary film about the Armenian genocide.
Ahead of Sunday evening's scheduled broadcast of a documentary titled Seyfo 1915 : The Assyrian Genocide , TV4 said it received an email from Turkish embassy press officer Arif Gulen, in which he opposes the film's use of the term
genocide, which is often used to describe the tragic death of thousands of Armenians at the hands of Ottoman Turks during WWI. The letter, which was subsequently published on TV4's official website claims hat only a competent international
tribunal can determine whether a particular event is genocide.
The broadcaster denounced Gulen's attempt to pressure the channel to cancel its broadcast, while promising to air the documentary on Sunday despite the warning. TV4's program director, Viveka Hansson said on the website:
We can never accept this. We will protest against any attempt to exert pressure that threatens freedom of expression.
Meanwhile, an orchestra in Germany has accused Turkey of forcing it to change the name of a concert it is scheduled to give on April 30, as well as remove a piece from its program that calls the massacre of Armenians a genocide. The name of the
event is Aghet, a term commonly used by Armenians to describe the events of 1915 as genocide, whose literal translation in English is catastrophe.
The Dresden Symphony orchestra said that Turkey's delegation to the EU had reportedly asked the European Commission (EC), which is financially supporting the event, to defund the concert and remove its title from the EC's official website. While
the Commission declined to withdraw the financial support, it did remove the announcement of the concert. A spokesperson for the Commission came up with a few weasel words to justify the censorship:
Due to concerns raised regarding the wording used in the project description, the Commission temporarily withdrew it,
The orchestra's director, Markus Rindt, slammed Turkey's bold interference as an an infringement on freedom of expression.
The Christian moralist campaign group, One Million Moms whinges:
ABC's Once Upon a Time introduced a lesbian couple during this week's episode which 1MM and parents find completely unnecessary. On the other hand, the producers said the inclusion of homosexuality in a show popular with kids was important.
Many families watch the program based on beloved children's fairytales, but unfortunately, ABC has distorted and twisted the storylines in these fables.
In Sunday's (April 17) episode, named Ruby Slippers , classic fairytale characters continue to push the envelope as Ruby from Little Red Riding Hood and Dorothy from The Wizard of Oz lock lips and introduce the show's
first LGBTQ couple.
In a series of flashbacks, a romance brews between the two women. A sleeping curse leads Ruby to bestow true love's kiss on Dorothy to wake her. One kiss breaks the spell, but many follow in a brief make out session as the munchkins from Oz
Once Upon a Time is a far from innocent fairytale entangling favorite Disney characters in a new, modern storyline. When it debuted in 2011 it was called the most family-friendly drama on any broadcast network in the past ten years and
Common Sense Media rated it for children 12 and up. So naturally, with its family-friendly 8:00 pm ET/7:00 pm CT Sunday night time slot, it attracts younger viewers and parents who still think of Disney as wholesome. Of course, 1MM knows that
Disney has not been wholesome for some time and, once again, they are purposefully pushing a gay agenda.
Ankara reportedly tried to pressurise Berlin into censoring a satirical clip aired by German broadcaster NDR earlier this month.
However, the show's producers decided to amplify the message and released English and Turkish subtitled versions of the video criticizing the Turkish President.
Following the broadcast of the satirical piece titled Erdowie, Erdowo, Erdogan on an NDR show titled Extra 3 on March 17, German Ambassador Martin Erdmann was summoned several days later to officially explain in length the
reasons for the broadcaster's behavior. An anonymous Turkish diplomat told AFP:
We demanded that the programme be deleted.
On Tuesday, the Foreign Office in Berlin said that Erdmann has been called in once again. However, during the meeting the German ambassador made it clear to the Turkish side that Germany is home to freedom of speech which it will protect. Erdmann
The rule of law, the independence of the judiciary and the protection of fundamental freedoms, including press freedom... need to be protected.
In the meantime, Extra 3 went out on a full-blown offensive against Erdogan's demand. The program's Facebook page shared an image of the request to stop showing the clip under the caption: Erdogan's idea of 'TV on demand' .
The satirical piece about The big boss from Bosporus, who is ripe for his great Ottoman Empire, starts off with criticizing Erdogan crackdown on freedom of speech. Erdogan is also criticized for the alleged shuffling of the
electorate votes and cracking down on women.
The controversy inevitably added to the popularity of the video, with the English version of the video on YouTube receiving over 1.7 million views in less than 24 hours after the news first emerged of Ankara summoning the German Ambassador.
European Commission head Jean-Claude Juncker has criticized Ankara's reaction to a satirical clip about President Recep Tayyip Erdogan broadcast on German TV. Commission spokeswoman Mina Andreeva said:
The EU chief does not approve of [Ankara's] decision to summon Germany's envoy just over a satirical song. He believes this moves Turkey away from the EU rather than brings it closer to us.
She quoted the Commission chief as saying that Turkey's reaction:
Doesn't seem to be in line with upholding the freedom of the press and freedom of expression, which are values the EU cherishes a lot .
A German prosecutor's office has confirmed that it is investigating if TV comedian Jan Böhmermann violated the law by reciting a "defamatory poem" about Turkish President Erdogan, while Chancellor Angela Merkel called the
piece deliberately insulting.
Böhmermann introduced the piece by speaking directly to the Turkish president: What I'm about to read is not allowed. If it were to be read in public - that would be forbidden in Germany, Böhmermann said, before proceeding to perform
his smear poem which, among many insults, called Erdogan a goat fucker who watches child porn while kicking Kurds.
The prosecution is to determine whether Böhmermann, the host of German state broadcaster ZDF's satirical program Neo Magazine Royale, breached section 103 of the German criminal code that forbids insulting official bodies and
representatives of foreign states.
Meanwhile, the German Ministry of Justice was reportedly asked by the prosecution to determine, if Turkey had launched a criminal probe in the name of its head of state. Section 104 of the German criminal code allows prosecutors to proceed
with such investigations only at a foreign government's request. So far, Turkey has not initiated any public proceedings against the comedian.
In an attempt to remedy the situation, German Chancellor Angela Merkel blasted the poem as deliberately insulting in a phone conversation with Turkish Prime-Minister Ahmet Davutoglu on Sunday, according government spokesman Steffen
In the wake of the conversation, a video recording of the poem was removed from ZDF's website. The broadcaster's spokesman, Alexander Stock, said that what was presented in the form of a poem for us have been a step too far.
Update: Bluffs are being called, is Germany now ruled by Turkey?
Turkey is now asking for Germany to prosecute a satirist who made fun of its president.
No matter how Merkel decides, experts say she can't win. She'll either offend an important diplomatic partner or alienate German supporters for being seen to be under the influence of a repressive dictator.
On Monday, the German government announced it would look into Turkey's request to prosecute jan Böhmermann for a taunting poem the satirist presented in his weekly TV show, Neo Magazine Royale . In it, Böhmermann called
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan a zoophile, accusing him of sleeping with goats and beating up girls, Christians and Kurds.
The diplomatic spat between Turkey and Germany comes at an especially inopportune time. For Chancellor Angela Merkel, Turkey is an important partner in the refugee crisis. Merkel has already given Turkey a massively generous (and unsupported by
many in Europe) carrot of an opportunity for early entry into the EU.
Critics of the deal had already complained that by entering the agreement, Merkel would make herself too dependent on Erdogan, a man whose regime has recently made news by shutting down newspapers and arresting government-critical journalists.
Even foreign politicians have entered the discussion. Former Greek finance minister Yanis Varoufakis has proclaimed his support for Böhmermann, despite having been the butt of his jokes many times in the past.
Offsite Comment: Germany's unfunny attack on the freedom to mock
Angela Merkel, has been criticised by members of her cabinet after acceding to a request from the Turkish president to prosecute a comedian who read out a poem insulting Recep Tayyip Erdogan.
Merkel was left with the final decision on whether Germany's state prosecutor should start proceedings against Böhmermann after Erdogan requested the comedian be prosecuted.
Under an obscure section of Germany's criminal code, prosecution for insults against organs or representatives of foreign states requires both a notification from the offended party and an authorisation from the government.
Update: German censorship victim has decided to suspend his own TV show
A German comedian whose satirical poem about the new leader of Germany, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, has demonstrated the loss of freedom of speech in the country. Popular comic Jan Boehmermann has now decided to suspend his own TV show.
In light of the controversy Boehmermann said he was taking a televisual pause to allow the public to concentrate again on really important matters such as the refugee crisis, videos of cats or the love life of (German actress and
model) Sophia Thomalla .
Merkel's decision to OK the persecution of Boehmermann has appalled rights bodies such as Human Rights Watch which has called on the German authorities to defend freedom of speech even if the contents of the speech are offensive to some .
In a new campaign article analyzing the past 20 years of the TV Content Ratings System, the Parents Television Council has found widespread, systemic problems that render the system inadequate for protecting children from graphic sex, violence,
and profanity on television. PTC President Tim Winter spouted:
Parents who rely on the TV Content Ratings System to make informed decisions about what to watch on television have been deceived, as our new research shows that the ratings system has systemically failed to provide accurate and consistent
information for its entire 20-year existence.
The campaign group claimed:
Regularly-scheduled series rated TV-G (appropriate for all audiences) have been eliminated from prime time. In all practicality, family shows rated for all audiences do not exist;
There are fewer programs on prime time broadcast television rated TV-PG;
There are fewer differences between the content of programs rated TV-PG and those rated TV-14;
Graphic content on television is increasing in both amount and intensity; yet
Every hour of content on broadcast television is rated as appropriate for a 14-year-old child, or even younger ages. Despite containing explicit content, no continuing program on broadcast television is rated TV-MA, appropriate for mature
The implications in our report are enormous and should give the TV industry significant pause. The industry should have to answer as to why TV-G rated primetime series are extinct; why the lines between TV-PG and TV-14 shows are blurred; why
more adult content is being shown on TV-PG shows; why nudity and violence are increasing on broadcast TV overall.
One reason for the problem is that the TV networks rate their own shows, creating an inherent conflict of interest. You don't see any TV-MA rated (the highest adult TV rating) shows on broadcast TV. It's not that some of the shows don't warrant
the MA rating, it's that the networks are financially motivated not to rate programs properly because most corporate sponsors won't advertise on MA-rated programs.
Another conflict of interest is that the TV networks run the board that oversees the ratings process. That board, the TV Parental Guidelines Monitoring Board, has enabled and sheltered this flawed ratings system rather than follow its
FCC-sanctioned mandate to monitor the system and improve upon it where necessary. For years, we have addressed our concerns to the Board but to no real avail.
In light of numerous warning letters sent to national television stations, which it says have fallen on deaf ears, the Indonesian Broadcasting Commission (KPI) has requested that the House of Representatives amend the Broadcasting Law to give the
body authority to censor TV programs.
KPI commissioner Amiruddin said the KPI wanted the authority to oversee the content of all television programs, including the power to censor content before it was aired. He added that the House of Representatives was enthusiastic about
strengthening the KPI. He said:
With the authority to supervise the content of programs, KPI will be able to monitor programs before they are aired to prevent any inappropriate content.
Under the current Broadcasting Law, the KPI does not have the authority to monitor television programs before they are aired.
The Parents Television Council, a US morality campaign group is warning families about the violent content in a new TV miniseries, Of Kings and Prophets airing on ABC.
The PTC's review indicated that the first episode contains a number of battles with swords, knives, spears, and other graphically violent content that ranges between the type of violent content found in The Lord of the Rings movies and 300
. There is some mild sexual content in the first episode. As such, the PTC cannot recommend this show for children. PTC President Tim Winter said:
Despite the fact that the miniseries is based on a book that most families in America have at home -- that book being the Bible -- parents should be forewarned that Of Kings and Prophets will not be appropriate for family viewing. While we are
grateful that the show runner, Chris Brancato, personally invited us to preview the first episode, it remains difficult for us to recommend this show to families given the graphic content. And given Mr. Brancato said that he'll be ' fighting
with broadcast standards and practices ' and that ' we're going to go as far as we can' throughout the series, there's likely to be even more explicit content in upcoming episodes
The real question here is, why wouldn't ABC and the show's producers want to reach the largest audience possible by making a series, based on the Bible, able to be viewed by families? Instead it appears that their primary objective was to be
edgy and explicit, rather than to entertain with a biblical story. And in so doing, they're carving away a large percentage of their potential market. This further demonstrates a disconnect between what the entertainment industry wants to
produce and what family audiences want to consume.
We hope that families will be forewarned about the content of this show and not mistakenly watch with their children. No doubt the network will rate the program TV-14, suggesting to parents that the material is appropriate for children as young
The Parents Television Council responded to the news that ABC cancelled Of Kings and Prophets after only two episodes aired:
The only reason networks cancel a show without burning off the remaining episodes is that there is no advertiser support. The dollars simply aren't there, and it is more economical for them to air something else entirely -- despite the fact that
they've paid for those unaired episodes. And based on the conversations we've had over the past few days with several of the most premiere sponsors in the country -- during which we questioned their underwriting such over-the-top graphic
violence in 'Of Kings and Prophets,' it was clear that advertiser support for the show was quickly evaporating. While we applaud ABC's cancellation of the show, we can't help but wonder why they would choose to air it in the first place.
Homosexuality and other abnormal sexual relationships have been banned from Chinese TV dramas.
The China Television Drama Production Industry Association and the China Alliance of Radio, Film and Television recently released a new set of TV content production guidelines , which detail plans to censor all dramas that feature inappropriate
sexual behavior, such as incest, sexual assault, adultery, one-night-stands and homosexuality.
One Million Moms is a US morality campaign that writes:
CBS is now airing a Christian-bashing program titled Angel From Hell , about a not so good guardian angel starring Jane Lynch. The previews alone can make believers sick to their stomachs with the blasphemous content
including crude humor, foul language and distasteful dialogue. The new show airs on Thursday evenings at 9:30 pm ET/8:30 pm CT with a 14-DL rating.
This program is a new comedy that focuses on a holier-than-thou character who is anything but that. The network also cast children in scenes that are extremely inappropriate, such as the angel using foul language in front of them and then joking
that she never promised to be G-rated. The premiere also included the angel hiding liquor in the children's clothes and saying, My booze! followed by a little boy saying, That's so cool! Almost every scene included the angel
drinking alcohol from a flask, even on Sunday, and once at a bar. Not to mention the angel rides on a wrecking ball while busting up a concrete angel statue.
Is nothing sacred anymore? Once again networks like CBS mock Christianity. Angel From Hell is a demeaning show portraying Christians in a negative light. This program is another attempt to distort the truth about Christianity.
Kenyan broadcasters will not be allowed to air adult content from 5am to 10pm Eastern African time, from June 2016.
A statement from the Kenya Communications Authority said the law is to protect children:
No broadcasting station shall air programmes, including interactive call-ins or discussion sessions, whose content is suitable for adult-only audience during the watershed period.
Popular stations in Kenya air explicit content during the day, a practise that appears to get them higher ratings and attracts more commercials. Reports say many are amused by the kind of content discussed and call into the programmes to share
their experiences related to sex with their partners. For instance, husbands report their wives while the divorced also narrate their former sex life.
The new set of amendments will also hinder preachers who solicit for funds from their followers. Kenyans have been victims of fraudulent preachers who stage-manage every proceeding during their services to capture attention.