China bans 120 ‘obscene’ songs

Beijing, Aug 11 (IANS) China has released a blacklist of songs that it says promote obscenity or violence and ordered website administrators to remove them from their sites.

The order from the ministry of culture on Monday accompanied a list of 120 songs that trumpeted “obscenity, violence, crime or harmed social morality”, the South China Morning Post said.

It said the content violated online “cultural management” regulations and that any unit or individual that did not take down the songs would face unspecified “severe punishment”.

The list contains Chinese language songs, some by household names in China, including Taiwanese pop singer Chang Csun-yuk and Taiwanese actor Stanley Huang.

Chang’s blacklisted songs include “Fart”, with the line “there are some people in the world who like farting while doing nothing”, and “I Love Taiwanese Girls”, in which he sings that he will take them to a gynaecology department if they get pregnant and urges them to take off their clothes.

Beijing regularly attempts to tighten its control over content it says disturbs social stability. Most music websites in China allow people to listen to music for free.

Other artists on the list include local bands and internet singers. On top of the list is Yinsaner, an underground hip-hop crew from here that mocks and swears about social trends and groups. Seventeen songs by the group have been banned.

The ministry’s decision angered some social media users, who drew comparisons to the Cultural Revolution, when musical scores including traditional Chinese operas and western classical music were banned.

Others expressed their disapproval of the move with sarcasm.

“Thanks to the Ministry of Culture for giving me a list of songs to listen to,” one Weibo user commented.

“I’ve never heard of the songs before. Thanks for letting me know and I’ll download them right away,” another wrote.

“Tonight, Yinsaner’s songs will reach their first peak for downloading,” said a third commentator.



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