ALESSANDRA DALY-JOHNSON WRITES – The highly anticipated film adaptation of the novel Fifty Shades of Grey was deemed inappropriate by the United Arab Emirates’ National Media Council (NMC) this past week. While the infamous book series, written by E. L. James, is available in stores in the UAE, the NMC has…Full Article UAE: Fifty Shades Gets Whipped by Censors
MARY GRACE COSTA WRITES – A defaced billboard featuring a same-sex couple in the Philippines has the LGBTQ community in an uproar. Meanwhile, online supporters rush to save the ad with a hashtag and a bit of creativity. Filipino retail giant Bench released a new ad campaign entitled “Love All…Full Article PHILIPPINES: Isn’t It All the Same Love?
MIRANDA PAK WRITES- With all the tension and protests in Hong Kong, it’s not surprising that media censorship is on the rise. Two recent reports show the decline of Hong Kong’s press freedom. The PEN American Center, a literary society and human rights organization, released a report stating that media self-censorship…Full Article HONG KONG: Hope for the Media
ELIZABETH NA’AI WRITES – Thailand’s military junta is crafting an Orwellian state. Junta leader and self-imposed Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha declared those who cross the lèse majesté line, or espouse anti-junta political dissent will be punished to the fullest extent of the law. The National Council for Peace and Order (NCPO)…Full Article THAILAND: Orwellian Dystopia at its Finest
MIRANDA PAK WRITES- An annual report on the state of press freedom in China offers little to cheer about for fans of Western style journalism and media openness. The report “China’s Media War: Censorship, Corruption & Control” outlines dozens of instances of direct censorship, Internet surveillance, abuse of legal processes,…Full Article HONG KONG: China Press Still Oppressed
ELIZABETH NAAI WRITES – The famed Land of Smiles could be mistaken for the Land of Scowls as the color-coded political strife continues. On November 3, junta leader and present Prime Minister General Prayut Chan-ocha prescribed a Thaksin-detox for the media to remedy Thailand’s conflict. […]Full Article THAILAND: History is ‘Rewritten’ by the Victors
ANNIE LUNDGREN WRITES – The recent pro-democracy uprising in Hong Kong has highlighted Chief Executive Leung Chun-ying’s growing unpopularity among protesters and their supporters. Since the uprising began in September, the CE has become no fan of electoral reform in Hong Kong. Currently, chief executive candidates are nominated by a…Full Article HONG KONG: Thumbs Down for Leung Chun-ying
RYAN LIPPERT WRITES – When two Associated Press journalists visited North Korea over the summer, they saw things few, if any, foreigners have ever seen. No, they did not see concentration camps or nuclear weapons. But they did get to see what life is like for North Koreans from all…Full Article NORTH KOREA: How the Other 90% Lives
ASIA MEDIA STAFF WRITES – In a recent article, Human Rights Watch labeled moves by Singapore’s censorship body as “a serious setback for freedom of expression on the Internet.” These criticisms arose after the Media Development Authority (MDA) asked a few notable alternative news websites to apply for licensing to keep…Full Article SINGAPORE: Tightening the Grip on Online Content
ASIA MEDIA STAFF WRITES – Even as Singapore’s National Day came and went Aug. 9, planning for the island city-state’s 50th birthday bash is already in full gear. The special committee set up to plan and implement this celebration has been dubbed SG50, or singapore50. A big point of departure for this year’s…Full Article SINGAPORE: Party Poopers Censor Birthday Bash
YVONNE EPPS WRITES — Let’s face it; as someone who falls in the 13-25 age range, some of the only ways I stay informed about world events is through the Facebook trending tags and reblogs on Tumblr. A Vietnamese news venue has taken notice and approached the problem with a…Full Article VIETNAM: The News Rap Battle of the Century!
AUSTIN SZABO WRITES – For years, news anchor and journalist Hamid Mir has been fighting for the cause of a free press in Pakistan. Now he’s fighting for his own life. Still recovering from an unsolved assassination attempt April 19, Mir, undaunted, issued a statement accusing the Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI)…Full Article PAKISTAN: Are Government Spies Behind Media Assault?
LAUREN CHEN WRITES — “Soon there will be no more Hong Kongers,” laments Yik Kan Cheung, post-production supervisor of GVAcreative, in response to Beijing’s stalwart censorship. Filmed in March, a satirical short film, called Hong Kong Will Be Destroyed After 33 Years, has been banned by Beijing’s propaganda authorities. The science fiction work depicts Hong…Full Article HONG KONG: No More Hong Kongers?
YVONNE EPPS WRITES — We’re already familiar with Vietnam’s war on peaceful protest and “Internet dissent.” But really: Is it wise to attack a journalist en route to a UN human rights review? Vietnamese authorities kept independent journalist, civil society advocate and prospective UN speaker Pham Chi Dung from leaving…Full Article VIETNAM: Relationship Status with the UN — It’s Complicated
LAUREN CHEN WRITES – Mainland authorities continue to usurp Hong Kong press freedom by silencing dissenting voices. Publisher Yao Wentian was arrested on what appear to be bogus charges of smuggling prohibited items, and has been detained for almost three months. Wentian is head of Morning Bell Press, a Hong Kong…Full Article HONG KONG: Mainland’s War on Hong Kong Publications