Censor Watch logo
www.censorwatch.co.uk

 
 Censor Watch
 Latest
  Home Censorship News Latest Melon Farmers
  Links Daily UK Ratings from the BBFC Thai-Anxiety
  Forum
Religious Watch


31st January

  Kingsman: The Secret Censor...

Director Matthew Vaughn denies that cuts were made to obtain a 15 rating
Link Here
Poster Kingsman the Secret Service 2015 Matthew Vaughn Kingsman: the Secret Service is a 2015 UK action crime comedy by Matthew Vaughn.
Starring Colin Firth, Michael Caine and Taron Egerton. Youtube link BBFC link IMDb

A while ago the BBFC passed the film 15 for strong bloody violence, strong language after BBFC advised pre-cuts for cinema release: The BBFC commented:

This film was originally seen for advice in an unfinished version. The company was informed the film was likely to be classified 18, but that their requested 15 could be achieved by making some reductions in scenes of violence. When the finished version was submitted for formal classification, reductions had been made and the film was passed 15.

Now Director Matthew Vaughn has denied that changes were made to obtain the 15 rating. From an interview with Den of Geek:

Den of Geek: I should ask you just to clarify the certification of the film in the UK ...

Vaughn: I haven't changed a fucking frame!

Den of Geek: Absolutely nothing? The BBFC posted that certain changes were made prior to submission to get a 15 certificate in the UK ?

Vaughn: Nothing. You've seen it! They're pretty intelligent people, the BBFC. And I think they get it right most of the time. They watched it, and I sat down with them. The violence is fun. You don't see people grimacing. They're laughing with it. It's like Tom & Jerry. It's over the top and colourful and playful.

Perhaps the inference from this conversation is that there is no uncut 18 version and the 15 rated version will be final.

However an article from movie-censorship.com gives more hope of an uncut version:

The British cut of the movie clocks in at 128:34 minutes while the German release has a duration of 129:25 minutes. The difference of 51 seconds is quite large and isn't due to rounding up. Also, logos can most likely be ignored since the film's sole distributor is 20th Century Fox. Therefore, it's quite possible that the film's UK pre-cuts won't affect other markets.

 

31st January

 Update: A Damn Good Thrashing with a Feather...

Fifty Shades of Grey gets a 15 rating in Australia, but it doesn't stop Morality in Media whingeing about sexual violence
Link Here
Poster Fifty Shades of Grey 2015 Sam Taylorjohnson Media Censorship in Australia has noted that the country's Censorship Board has awarded a 15 rating to Fifty Shades of Grey.

The Australian Classification Board gave an MA15+ rating to the film for strong sex scenes, sexual themes and nudity...

An Ma15+ means:

The content is considered unsuitable for exhibition by persons under the age of 15. Persons under this age may only legally purchase or exhibit MA15+ rated content under the supervision of an adult guardian.

morality in media logo Meanwhile the US Morality in Media campaign group has launched its miserable campaign against the film: 

National Center on Sexual Exploitation (NCSE) is a new name for Morality in Media (MIM). The organization ichanged its name early in 2015.

National Center on Sexual Exploitation (NCSE) has launched an aggressive national campaign against the controversial film, Fifty Shades of Grey .  NCSE's new webpage,  FiftyShadesIsAbuse.com  highlights 50 plus ways that Fifty Shades  harms and provides various actions that the public can take, including signing a  boycott petition  and joining the  #50DollarsNot50Shades  campaign, which calls on patrons to forgo the film and donate to women's shelters  instead.

Hollywood is advertising the Fifty Shades  story as an erotic love affair, but it is really about sexual abuse and violence against women, said Dawn Hawkins, executive director of National Center on Sexual Exploitation. Hawkins noted that the public sees too much sexual abuse and violence against women in real life and urged Hollywood to take this into consideration when setting the entertainment agenda. The porn industry has poised men and women to receive the message that sexual violence is enjoyable.  Fifty Shades  models this porn message and Hollywood cashes the check, said Hawkins.

 

31st January

  Judged too small a sample...

Senior judge makes claims that internet porn makes rapists and murderers commit worse crimes
Link Here
baron thomas of cwmgiedd John Thomas, the Lord Chief Justice has claimed to MPs that extreme internet pornography is causing rapists and murderers to commit worse crimes than before the time when such horrific material was available online,

However his claim appears to be on rather shaky grounds being based on just two cases. The most senior judge in England and Wales said he had dealt with two deeply disturbing criminal cases which had been influenced and intensified by shocking internet pornography.

He told MPs of the House of Commons' justice select committee:

The first of the two cases has left me in no doubt that the peddling of pornography on the internet has a tremendous effect on that individual.

What's available now to download and to see is simply horrific and it played a real part in ... the way in which this particularly horrible murder was carried out.

The first case referred to by Lord Williams concerned Jamie Reynolds , a sexual deviant who killed 17-year-old Georgia Williams by hanging her at his parents' house in 2013. In the second case, former soldier Anwar Rosser murdered four-year-old Riley Turner in a savage and gratuitous attack.

graph showing violent crime fall as internet access increases I Beg to Differ M'Lud

See  article from  mirror.co.uk
See  article from  backlash-uk.org.uk

Nick Cowen, an academic and researcher at the campaign group Backlash, responded to Thomas's claims saying it was impossible to suggest that porn was making men more likely to rape and murder.

In fact, he suggested that the arrival of hardcore pornography may have even made society LESS violent:

You cannot establish a strong relationship between images someone looks at and what crimes they commit. Violent crime is actually on the decline for all manner of reasons. Some recent evidence suggests pornography may be contributing to that, although the effect is small.

He pointed to a Home Office graph which shows the UK has become less violent since the 1990s, when internet pornography first became available.

And Some Unsubstantiated Claptrap from Safermedia

Safer Media Pippa Smith, chair of the religious campaign group SaferMedia told Mirror Online about a number of cases described to her by colleagues and psychotherapists. She told of a 18-year-old boy who had watched so much porn that he developed fantasies about punching women in the face and even began to follow strangers late at night.

Today's men are part of a guinea pig generation for porn exposure, she spouted, and the consequences could be dire:

Pornography has become much more violent and abusive and it can lead some to view ever more perverse material and even act it out. So for those who say porn is harmless, it is just not true.

 

31st January

 Update: One Million Moms Recommend...

Carl's Jnr burger advert for the 2015 Super Bowl
Link Here  full story: One Million Moms...Moralist whingers against anything sexy

carls jnr advert 2015 video The Christian moralist campaign group, One Million Moms whinges:

Carl's Jr. and Hardee's, both owned by CKE Restaurants, are at it again by using sex to sell burgers. Their new ad is extremely inappropriate to air at any time, but especially while families are likely watching. Their All-Natural commercial will surely ruin family time once again.

The commercial that will be shown at the Super Bowl features a woman who appears to be naked as she walks through a farmer's market. This is as close to complete nudity as you can get because she appears to be nude until the end when she is in full view wearing a string bikini top and tiny shorts while eating a hamburger from Carl's Jr.

The only indication of who sponsored this ad is in the final few seconds of the commercial. Carl's Jr. and Hardee's regularly bank on the sex sells philosophy. There is no need for a burger to be promoted by sex appeal, and this advertising ploy is why 1MM will not give up.

Families should be able to watch the game together if they choose. Last year's game was remarkably improved from years past because viewers were not bombarded with sexually explicit and disgusting ads during every commercial break. Parents should remain on guard, but it is encouraging to see that our voice kept crudeness to a minimum. That is 1MM's goal again this year.

 

31st January

  Searching for Privacy...

Google agrees to be more open how it uses people's personal data
Link Here
information commissioners office logo Google has agreed to rewrite its privacy policy after pressure from the UK Information Commissioner's Office. The firm must make it easier for users to find out how their data is collected and what it is used for and submit to a two-year review.

The deal follows an investigation by the regulator. Similar reviews are continuing elsewhere in Europe. It is understood that Google will seek to strike a similar deal with other European regulators.

The Information Commissioner's Office (ICO) found that Google was too vague when describing how it uses personal data gathered from its web services and products .

Google will also provide unambiguous and comprehensive information regarding data processing, including an exhaustive list of the types of data processed by Google and the purposes for which data is processed .

Among other clarifications, Google will have to include information about who may collect anonymous identifiers - which are similar to cookies - and the purposes to which they put that data.

It will also be made to ensure that passive users are better informed about the processing of their data . The ICO defines passive users as people who use Google, but who are not signed in. Jump media player Media player help Out of media player. Press enter to return or tab to continue.

 

31st January

 Offsite Article: When will gamers understand that criticism isn't censorship?...

Link Here
Call Duty Advanced Warfare PS4 Guardian PC claptrap but it does outline a PC attempt at censorship of male oriented computer games

See article from theguardian.com

 

31st January

 Offsite Article: France gets heavy with dissenters...

Link Here  full story: Charlie Hebdo...Censored by terrorists
France flag Long jail terms after crackdown on speech that glorifies terrorism

See article from theguardian.com

 

30th January

 Updated: Leela Samson loses her appeal...

Indian film censor resigns after her ban on the movie MSG is overturned on appeal
Link Here  full story: Banned Movies in India...Sex, religion and easy offence
CBFC logo India's censor board chief has resigned after reports that a film rejected by her panel has been cleared for release.

Leela Samson quit after an appeals board approved the film Messenger of God , directed by and starring Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh.

Samson's Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC) had found the film unsuitable for the public, reportedly because it promoted superstition. She also accused the state-run CBFC of corruption and coercion .

Messenger of God was cleared by the Film Certification Appellate Tribunal.

A CBFC member, Nandini Sardesai, said supported her boss saying:

We all saw the movie. It was the collective decision of eight of us that the movie was not suitable for public viewing.

Later 9 members of the Central Board of Film Certification sent their resignation letters to the Information and Broadcasting Minister on citing interference and corruption in the ministry. In their letter to the I&B Minister, CBFC members said:

The events that led to the Chairperson Ms. Leela Samson resigning from her position are merely the proverbial last straw. We have been asking for some critical changes, which are imperative to the functioning of the CBFC. Not a single positive step has been taken by the Ministry.

Government sources said the members who have quit were on their way out anyway adding that a new censor board will be announced soon.

Update: Now 13

18th January 2015. See  article from  indiantelevision.com

The resignation count has risen to 13 members resigning to support Leela Samson.

Update: New censor

20th January 2015. See  article from  ibnlive.in.com

pahlaj nihalani Filmmaker Pahlaj Nihalani has been appointed as new chairperson of Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC). This comes after Leela Samson resigned last week.

Nihalani said he will do his job without any controversy and he also said that there was nothing wrong in the way MSG - Messenger of God was cleared by appellate Tribunal.

Nine new members have also been appointed to the board to replace those resigning with Samson.

Update: State censors

22nd January 2015.  See  article from  theguardian.com

The composition of the new board, especially the number of BJP (the ruling Indian nationalist party) sympathisers on it, does little to allay the accusations made by Samson and her co-workers. In the runup to last year's general elections, Nihalani directed a music video praising the current prime minister, Narendra Modi. During a television interview on Tuesday, he said he was proud to be a BJP person , and called Modi his action hero and the voice of the nation . He blames the previous government, saying the [board's] problems started during their tenure.

Three other new members are either BJP leaders or have ties to its nationalist parent organisation, the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh. One of them even contested the 2014 general elections on a BJP ticket.

MSG is now slated for release on 6 February. The chief minister of Punjab, whose state had earlier banned the film due to the communique regarding public safety concerns, has said the government will review the order.

Update: A vulgar censor

24th January 2015.  See  article from  timesofindia.indiatimes.com

 India's new film censor quickly set out his stall by having a good whinge at supposedly vulgar TV. He whined that there is too much nudity on television and internet which should be controlled. Speaking to TOI Pahlaj Nihalani whinged:,

Nudity is available online and on certain TV programs like live fashion shows. It should be in sync with the rules followed in films. There should be one policy for nudity (portrayal of sex in films).

He said that while films on TV, promos went through a certification process, many live programmes were subject to self-regulation. The self-regulation is not being followed. There is vulgarity on TV...it should be controlled, he said.

Nihalani who in a recent interview described PM Narendra Modi as his action hero defended his words:

I am a big fan of BJP. I admire Modiji for his leadership qualities and people are very happy that he is in power. There are expectations from him and as a citizen of this country I am motivated to move ahead.

Update: Ranting and raving

30th January 2015.  See  article from  filmibeat.com

sunny leone India's new chief film censor, Pahlaj Nihalani, has been ranting and raving about increasing film censorship. He has also has a whinge about the internet and 'how it will affect the nation's youth':

I am talking about the material that is uploaded. For instance, take Sunny Leone. We accepted her as an artist. And with her popularity, everybody, from school kids to grown ups, have watched her sites (adult films). People are paying money to watch her. How can there be tolerance for all this? What will the new generation learn?.

I don't mind being called conservative if I have to serve the nation. You have to take care of the new generation, on whom the future of the country depends. So how can we allow ourselves to give them wrong education? The censor board is very liberal. But what is the modern generation watching? We are giving them the license to see anything. How is this projecting our culture? Everything is free online and as you can see the youth is misusing it. Even for the online platform, I feel there should be rules and without censorship material should not be uploaded.

On television, they watch content without any censor. Many live programmes come without censor, especial the comedy and fashion shows. So much vulgarity they show on TV. On many live shows you can see short skirts and lingerie. How can you tolerate all this? What is the meaning of censorship then?

 

30th January

  Speak Now...whilst you still can...

Taylor Swift thinks she owns the English language and trademarks phrases from her lyrics
Link Here
Speak Now Taylor Swift Singer Taylor Swift has trademarked phrases including this sick beat and we never go out of style , in the United States.

The phrases are all lyrics from her current album, 1989. The trademark ruling prohibits others from using her lyrics on items such as t-shirts, stickers and bags.

 

30th January

 Offsite Article: The new war against PC...

Link Here
Spiked logo It's too late and it's picked the wrong target. Why almost everyone is wrong about political correctness. By Brendan O'Neill

See article from spiked-online.com

 

29th January

 Update: More Dead...

Channel 4 airs an extended version for the 2013 Evil Dead
Link Here  full story: Evil Dead...Remake re-awakens the franchise
Evil Dead DVD Jane Levy Evil Dead is a 2013 USA horror by Fede Alvarez.
With Jane Levy, Shiloh Fernandez, Jessica Lucas. YouTube icon BBFC link IMDb

An extended version of Evil Dead, the 2013 remake, has just been broadcast by Channel 4.

This unheralded version has sparked interest on forums, but is something of a puzzle. The version featured about 4 minutes of additional material and seemed complete in terms of violence. This rather disproves theories about it being a US TV version. It is a common pattern for US TV to add in deleted material to replace or compensate for the cutting of any sex and violence.

Director Fede Avarez has been asked about the current extended version but wasn't able to throw any light on the matter.

Before the release of the original release of the film the director spoke of brief cuts to achieve a US R rating and also of the possibility of an extended version. But shortly before the premiere, Alvarez proclaimed that the Theatrical Version was his Director's Cut and no more was heard of an alternative version...until now.

 

29th January

  Drunk on Self Importance...

Alcohol Concern ludicrously thinks David Beckham should be banned from advertising adult products because he was once popular with kids
Link Here

haig club video A TV ad and an online video for Haig Club whisky:

The ad featured David Beckham, who was riding a motorcycle, and others travelling through a craggy landscape to meet each other. The actors were all shown congregating in smart attire, with Beckham carrying a bottle of Haig Club. He poured the drink into tumblers for them and they were then shown posing for photographs while, initially, holding their tumblers. The background changed to show different countries and settings, and the arrangement of the group also changed, with the characters no longer holding their glasses, before returning to the original group photograph. The ad ended with a shot of the product and the caption Haig Club single grain scotch whisky Welcome.

The ASA received two complaints.

Alcohol Concern, who considered that David Beckham would have strong appeal to those under 18 years of age, challenged whether the ad was irresponsible because it:

1. featured David Beckham promoting an alcoholic beverage; and

2. implied that drinking was a key component of social success or acceptance, and that refusal was a sign of weakness.

3. Alcohol Concern and one other complainant challenged whether the ad implied that drinking was a key component to the success of a personal relationship or social event.

ASA Assessment: Not in breach

1. Not upheld

The ASA considered that, as a recently-retired footballer, David Beckham would be likely to hold general appeal for some children. Nonetheless, we noted that he had not played for a UK club in the last decade and was therefore unlikely to have particular resonance for children on the basis of his sporting career alone, or have strong appeal on that basis. We understood that Alcohol Concern specifically noted that Beckham had won a Nickelodeon Kid's Choice Sports Legend award earlier this year, and that they felt this demonstrated a strong appeal to children. However, we also understood that the award's recipient was chosen by Nickelodeon, rather than being voted on by children, and that the award was primarily an American one. We considered that, although it suggested the potential for some appeal to children, the opinion of the largely-American Nickelodeon channel was insufficient to demonstrate that Beckham held strong appeal to children in the UK.

We also noted that Beckham had been prominently involved in promoting Sainsbury's Active Kids and UNICEF campaigns, but considered that these were unlikely to contribute particularly to his appeal to children or to indicate that he had a strong appeal to them. We noted that Beckham was widely known for his commercial and ambassadorial roles, as well as his family, albeit with football as the reason for his initial fame. We considered that, although Beckham's early career would have meant that he held strong appeal to children at that time, the shift from football to commercial ventures, as well as his move to play in foreign leagues and subsequent retirement from football, meant that he was no longer likely to hold such appeal to children in 2014. Because we considered that David Beckham did not have strong appeal to children and was not likely to be a figure whose example children would follow, we concluded that the ad had not breached the Code.

2 & 3. Not upheld

The ASA noted that the whisky was shown as part of a social occasion and was one aspect of the theme of the ad. However, we considered that the preamble to the photograph scene demonstrated a well-established friendship and sense of ease between the characters that was already present before the drink was poured. We also noted that the only photograph in which the drink was shown was the present-day image and that the other scenes showed the history of the group's friendship without the presence or consumption of alcohol. We understood that one of the complainants had concerns about the use of the word Club in the brand name as depicted in the ad. Although we noted that the end frame of the ad also included the word welcome and that this carried an allusion to social activity, we considered that consumers would recognise the use of the word Club as a reference to the name of the brand rather than a suggestion that purchasing or consuming the product would lead to social success or belonging. In light of these elements we concluded that the ad did not imply that drinking was a key component of social success or acceptance, the success of a personal relationship or social event, or that refusal was a sign of weakness.

 

29th January

  Smashing up Phil Neville...

BBC responds to complaints about throwaway comment by football pundit
Link Here
bbc sport fa cup logo The BBC have responded to complaints about Phil Neville FA Cup punditry during the Arsenal vs brighton Tie.

As usual the BBC responds to complaints without actually detailing what was being complained about.

For the record, Neville said he would smash team-mates in training if he saw them perform a no look pass like Tomas Rosicky's during Arsenal's 3-2 FA Cup win over Brighton and Hove Albion:

If that was a training session and somebody did that, I'd be first over there and I'd probably look to two-foot him or take him out of the game. If somebody did that in training to me, winding me up, I would be straight in there. I'd smash them.'

The BBC responded on their website:

FA Cup Match of the Day, BBC One, 25 January 2015

Complaint

We received complaints from some viewers unhappy with the comments made by Phil Neville during the programme.

BBC Response

When analysing the playing style of Tomas Rosicky, Phil attempted a tongue-in-cheek comment. This comment was not meant to offend in any way, but on reflection, Phil acknowledges that the language he used was unfortunate.

That said, Mark Chapman did immediately challenge him and the tone of the discussion was light-hearted enough to suggest that the panel were not condoning any kind of violence or setting an example to a younger audience.

BBC Sport will, however, remind the team to take extra care during discussions during our live programmes.

 

29th January

  In the Face of Threats...

Facebook censors images of Mohammed in Turkey
Link Here
Facebook logo Facebook has agreed to censor pages showing images of the religious character Mohammed in Turkey despite Mark Zuckerberg giving his support to freedom of speech proclaiming Je Suis Charlie .

A court in the Turkish capital, Ankara, ruled that several Facebook pages were deemed to be insulting the Prophet Mohammed and Facebook agreed to block access on January 25. The court had threatened that if the ruling was not adhered to, Facebook access would be wholly removed in the country.

The company's decision comes after Mark Zuckerberg said on Facebook that the site followed the laws of the country but we never let one country or group of people dictate what people can share across the world . The billionaire added:

I'm committed to building a service where you can speak freely without fear or violence... #JeSuisCharlie. Related Articles

 

29th January

 Offsite Article: A little angry bird told me...

Link Here  full story: Internet Snooping in the US...Prism and secret internet snooping
angry birds logo The Guardian details how GCHQ and NSA hoover up personal data leaking from apps such as Angry Birds

See article from theguardian.com

 

28th January

  A Twisted Definition of Tolerance...

Jewish leaders in a disgraceful call for censorship and a European blasphemy law, subtly hiding it behind a ban on reprehensible cultural practices
Link Here
european council on tolerance and reconciliation logo European Jewish leaders, backed by  former EU heads of state and government, are calling for pan-European legislation outlawing antisemitism and criticism of religion.

A panel of four international jewish leaders backed by the misleadingly named European Council on Tolerance and Reconciliation (ECTR) have spent three years drafting a 12-page document on 'tolerance' . They are lobbying to have it converted into law in the 28 countries of the EU.

The proposal would outlaw antisemitism as well as criminalising a host of other activities of what the group deems to be violating fundamental rights on religious, cultural, ethnic and gender grounds.

The group head the list with some justifiable prohibitions, female genital mutilation, forced marriage, polygamy, but then slip in extensive censorship and blasphemy items, eg criminalising xenophobia, and creating a new crime of group libel , ie public defamation of ethnic, cultural or religious groups. Then to try and generate a little support, the group extends the list to include women's and gay rights.

The proposed legislation would also curb freedom of expression on grounds of a bizarre definition of 'tolerance'. The document twists the meaning of tolerance to try and justify the end to the right of freedom of expression:

Tolerance is a two-way street. Members of a group who wish to benefit from tolerance must show it to society at large, as well as to members of other groups and to dissidents or other members of their own group.

There is no need to be tolerant to the intolerant. This is especially important as far as freedom of expression is concerned: that freedom must not be abused to defame other groups.

But the document goes much further, calling for the criminalisation of overt approval of a totalitarian ideology, xenophobia or antisemitism.

Education in tolerance should be mandatory from primary school to university, and for the military and the police, while public broadcasting must devote a prescribed percentage of their programmes to promoting a climate of 'tolerance' .

The panel was chaired by Yoram Dinstein, a war crimes expert, professor and former president of Tel Aviv university.

The drafters are currently touring the parliaments of Europe trying to drum up support.

 

28th January

  Sniping...

Arab American campaigners unhappy with the Hollywood film, American Sniper
Link Here
American Sniper DVD UltraViolet American Sniper is a 2014 USA action biography by Clint Eastwood.
Starring Bradley Cooper, Sienna Miller and Kyle Gallner. Youtube link IMDb

A Navy S.E.A.L. recounts his military career, which includes more than 150 confirmed kills.

A group calling itself the American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee (ADC) has written to director Clint Eastwood and star Bradley Cooper claiming an increase in threats against US muslims. The ADC said:

A majority of the violent threats we have seen over the past few days are result of how Arab and Muslims are depicted in American Sniper.

The group said it had collected hundreds of violent messages targeting Arab and Muslim Americans from movie-goers , mainly from Facebook and Twitter.

The letter asked Eastwood and Cooper to speak out against such messages in an effort to reduce the hateful rhetoric .

 

28th January

  Sad Story...

GoDaddy bullied into pulling Super Bowl advert featuring a puppy
Link Here

godaddy puppy advert video Website hosting company GoDaddy has upset puppy lovers. It said that it would pull its latest Super Bowl ad over complaints that it somehow promotes inhumane breeding practices.

In the ad, an adorable golden retriever puppy falls off the back of the truck, then travels day and night to return home to his owners.

I'm so glad you made it home, the puppy's owner says when she greets him. Because I just sold you on this website I built with GoDaddy.com.

The Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals whinged:

If you can buy a puppy online and have it shipped to you the next day, it's likely you're supporting inhumane breeding.

The PC lynch mob bayed for blood on Change.org in petition that raised about 40,000 signatures:

Essentially, Go Daddy is encouraging private breeding/puppy mills while shelter animals wait patiently for their forever homes or worse -- to be euthanized. Animal rights are no laughing matter and to portray them as such is cruel and irresponsible.

GoDaddy CEO Blake Irving responded.

What should have been a fun and funny ad clearly missed the mark and we will not air it.

 

28th January

 Update: Rajan Zed Recommends...

Fox TV's Sleepy Hollow
Link Here  full story: Rajan Zed...Taking easy offence at hindu imagery
Sleepy Hollow Season 1 DVD The professional whinger Rajan Zed has claimed that a recent episode of Fox's supernatural TV show, Sleepy Hollow somehow distorted hindu concepts.

Zed described the Kali Yuga episode as highly inappropriate portrayal of Hindu goddess Kali and urged public apologies from all those responsible for it, including 21st Century Fox Chairman Rupert Murdoch, Fox Television Group Chairman Gary Newman, and creators Alex Kurtzman and Roberto Orci.

Zed said that goddess Kali was highly revered in Hinduism and was meant to worshipped in temples or home shrines and not to be thrown around loosely in reimagined versions for dramatic effects in TV shows.

Free speech denier Zed claimed that Hindus were for free speech as much as anybody else if not more ...BUT... faith was something sacred and attempts at belittling it hurt the devotees. Zed further said no faith, larger or smaller, should be ridiculed at.

 

27th January

  I am not calling for a ban...BUT...

British MP Thomas Docherty calls for the banning of Hitler's book, Mein Kampf
Link Here
Mein Kampf Adolf Hitler The Scottish Labour MP Thomas Docherty has written to the British culture secretary inferring that Adolf Hitler's book, Mein Kampf should be banned.

He is calling for a national debate on whether the sale of the book should be banned in the UK.

Docherty has written to culture secretary Sajid Javid about the text, pointing out that it is currently rated as an Amazon bestseller . An edition of Mein Kampf is currently in fifth place on Amazon's history of Germany chart, in fourth place in its history references chart, and in 665th place overall. He wrote:

I think that there is a compelling case for a national debate on whether there should be limits on the freedom of expression.

And of course the inevitable '...BUT...' He said i n his letter there are:

Many who would argue that the publication of books as repulsive as Mein Kampf is the price of living in a democracy, and that by allowing academic study of books such as this, we ensure that our society understands better the causes of fascism and the origins of Nazism.

...BUT...

there are also many who would argue that such a book, which sought to incite racial hatred and fuel antisemitism, is too offensive to be made available.

And of course he doesn't want to be as vulgar as actually calling for a ban, he would much rather find somebody else to utter those words:

I'm not saying it should be banned, I am saying we should absolutely have a debate about whether or not it should be banned,

Could you have for argument's sake a system of academic licensing, a system in which institutes of learning were permitted to publish and teach it? Let's have the debate. Let's ask, in the 21st century, are there limits to free speech?

 

27th January

 Update: Quality Nonsense...

Rajan Zed professionally offended by ginger beer label
Link Here  full story: Rajan Zed...Taking easy offence at hindu imagery
brookvale union ginger beer A religious activist group says it plans to complain to Australia's advertising watchdog about a brewer that is using images of Hindu gods on its ginger beer bottle labels.

Aussie firm Brookvale Union, which uses the slogan Quality nonsense , apologised to Hindus offended by the labelling after receiving complaints in 2013, but the Universal Society of Hinduism has issued a new public complaint that the offending bottles are still on sale.

The bottles, which feature Hindu deities Ganesh and Lakshmi, carry the slogan Spicy yet mild, dry but wet, smooth yet sharp, tight but loose .

The group also says that the company has not removed the supposedly objectionable images from its website, which it had said it would when the issue was first raised two years ago.

The Universal Society of Hinduism's president Rajan Zed called on Brookvale Union to recall all the soft drink bottles carrying the images from the market, and show some responsibility, respect and maturity and understand the hurt feelings of Hindu community by saying sorry again. The free speech hating Zed spouted:

Hindus are for free expression and speech as much as anybody else if not more ...BUT... faith was something sacred and attempts at trivializing it tormented the devotees.

Inappropriate usage of Hindu deities or concepts or symbols for commercial or other agenda is not okay as it hurts the devotees. Lord Ganesh and Goddess Lakshmi are highly revered in Hinduism and they are meant to be worshipped in temples or home shrines and not to be used in selling beer for mercantile greed.

 

27th January

 Offsite Article: North East blue movie producer says the law on porn is an ass...

Link Here  full story: UK Internet Porn Censorship...2014 law censors content and mandates age verification for porn
facesitting protest Good to see local press being supportive of the British adult industry being snuffed out by David Cameron's censorship

See article from thenorthernecho.co.uk

 

26th January

  Lest it 'offends' the terrorists...

Don't call a terrorist a terrorist. A fascinating lesson in BBC political correctness and news reporting.
Link Here
bbc news logo The Islamists who committed the Charlie Hebdo massacre in Paris should be not be described as terrorists by the BBC, a senior executive at the corporation has said.

Tarik Kafala, the head of BBC Arabic, said the term terrorist was too loaded to describe the actions of the men who killed 12 people in the attack on the French satirical magazine. Kafala told The Independent :

We try to avoid describing anyone as a terrorist or an act as being terrorist. What we try to do is to say that 'two men killed 12 people in an attack on the office of a satirical magazine'. That's enough, we know what that means and what it is.

Terrorism is such a loaded word. The UN has been struggling for more than a decade to define the word and they can't. It is very difficult to. We know what political violence is, we know what murder, bombings and shootings are and we describe them. That's much more revealing, we believe, than using a word like terrorist which people will see as value-laden.

Kafala's are in line with the BBC's editorial guidelines on reporting terrorism. The guidelines state:

[The BBC] does not ban the use of the word. However, we do ask that careful thought is given to its use by a BBC voice. There are ways of conveying the full horror and human consequences of acts of terror without using the word 'terrorist' to describe the perpetrators.

The value judgements frequently implicit in the use of the words 'terrorist' or 'terrorist group' can create inconsistency in their use or, to audiences, raise doubts about our impartiality. It may be better to talk about an apparent act of terror or terrorism than label individuals or a group.

When reporting an attack, the BBC guidelines say it should use words which specifically describe the perpetrator such as bomber , attacker , gunman , kidnapper or militant .

[But such obvious avoidance of attributing terrorists to causes does little except emphasise that the BBC is providing a propaganda slant on the news. It just comes across as politically correct double speak].

 

26th January

 Update: Baby...

Indian film banned in Pakistan over sensitivity of being depicted as terrorists
Link Here  full story: Banned Films in Pakistan...Sensitive issues of image and religion
Poster Baby 2015 Neeraj Pandey Baby is a 2015 India action crime mystery by Neeraj Pandey.
Starring Kerem Sarikaya, Ali Balkan Avci and Zachary Coffin. Youtube link IMDb

An elite counter-intelligence unit learns of a plot, masterminded by a maniacal madman. With the clock ticking, it's up to them to track the terrorists' international tentacles and prevent them from striking at the heart of India.

Baby is an Indian action movie about a spy mission to catch a dreaded terrorist. It has now been banned by Pakistan's film censors. The Dawn newspaper reported:

Censor boards in Islamabad and Karachi have decided to ban the film because it portrays a negative image of Muslims and the negative characters in the film also have Muslim names.

All CDs and DVDs of the film have also been banned in Islamabad. A representative of the film's distributor, Everready Pictures informed the paper that the film has been banned in Pakistan.

Earlier, director Neeray Pandey was quoted as saying that the film was not anti-Pakistan. The board routinely bans films deemed to have anti- Pakistan themes.

 

26th January

 Update: Dictator's Club...

North Korea persuades Cambodia to ban The Interview, at least from cinema and TV
Link Here
Interview Blu ray UltraViolet James Franco In a January 8 letter to Cambodia's Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the North Korean Embassy asks the government to confiscate all copies of The Interview from Cambodia's DVD shops and keep the movie off big and small screens alike.

In the letter, the embassy complains that pirated copies of the film are already being openly sold at malls around Phnom Penh.

This is generated by the plot of the hostile forces manipulating to break the long traditional friendship between the Kingdom of Cambodia and the DPR [Democratic People's Republic of] Korea.

The letter asks the government:

To take appropriate measure to see that the 'Interview,' byproduct of U.S. maneuvers against DPR Korea, would be no longer sold in the sublime Kingdom of Cambodia and also would never be broadcast on any Cambodian TV channel or shown at any movie house.

Information Minister Khieu Kanharith said the film would not be shown on television.

Even before the letter from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, my ministry already made request to all TV and Pay TV stations not to broadcast this film.

The traditional practice here isn't to offend nor hurt the country having diplomatic relations with Cambodia.

Culture Minister Phoeurng Sackona said the movie would also not be making it to the big screen. However the local DVD trade is harder to control. Eg at City Mall, every DVD shop had the movie for sale Sunday.

Last week, the New York Times reported that shop owners in Rangoon had copies of the movie confiscated by police.

 

26th January

 Offsite Article: A Fall from Grace...

Link Here
Skyfall DVD Daniel Craig_updated ITV cuts over a minute from the Christmas Eve 8pm showing of Skyfall

See article from movie-censorship.com

 

25th January

  Pre-VRA...

BBFC Podcast 26 discusses the first half of James Ferman's reign at the board
Link Here
James Ferman The BBFC describe the latest episode as:

This episode of the podcast looks at the first half of James Ferman's career as Director of the BBFC, focusing on key classification decisions and events from 1975 to 1984. We'll examine the remainder of his time as Director in a future episode.

 

25th January

 Extracts: Fighting the Good Fight...

Pandora Blake debates and opposes Cameron's suffocating porn censorship
Link Here  full story: UK Internet Porn Censorship...2014 law censors content and mandates age verification for porn
pandora blake spanked, not silenced logo Pandora Blake runs a very popular website on the theme of Spanking. She has taken a prominent role in opposing the Government's discriminatory new law censoring British porn, and particularly targeting kinks focusing on women's enjoyment of sex.

She has recently posted 3 articles on the topic:

Channel 4 debate on UK porn protest

You have all probably seen this already, but I haven't mentioned it here yet, on 12th December after the facesitting protest outside Parliament against the new UK porn laws, I was invited to debate the issue on Newsnight.

See article and video from Newsnight from pandorablake.com

Video blog about UK porn censorship

I finally got round to making a video blog about the new UK porn censorship laws. The Audiovisual Media Services Regulations (AVMS) 2014 impose dramatic restrictions on the sort of online porn that can be published in the UK, disproportionately targeting fetish, queer and feminist porn with no reference to whether the content was ethically and consensually produced. These laws criminalise me and my site Dreams of Spanking, and put me and other independent UK porn producers in a very precarious position. If you want to know more detail about the laws, exactly what is restricted, and how they affect me, watch this.

See video blog from pandorablake.com

Help me fight the new UK porn laws

The best chance for me and every other producer affected by this is to join forces and support Backlash, the campaign group who are lobbying against these regulations, as well as defending freedom of sexual expression on many other fronts. The best way to support them, if you can, is by donating hard cash. They explain on their website:

The majority of our income is spent on legal support for people who fall foul of laws and practises that criminalise, or discriminate against, their consensual and victimless sexual practises. We also endeavour to advocate our beliefs in such freedoms and make challenges to the legislative process where we can.

Any producer who refuses to comply with these regulations and ends up in court will need every bit of support Backlash has to offer.

See article from pandorablake.com

 

25th January

  Best Kept Archived...

Fear of muslim violence leads V and A museum to disclaim possessing images of Mohammed
Link Here
v and a logo The Victoria and Albert museum has attempted to conceal its ownership of a devotional image of the religious character Muhammad, citing security concerns, in what is part of a wider pattern of apparent self-censorship by British institutions that scholars fear could undermine public understanding of Islamic art and the diversity of Muslim traditions .

Similar images have been shown in exhibitions across Europe and America without prompting outrage, much less protests or a violent response.

British museums and libraries hold dozens of these images, mostly miniatures in manuscripts several centuries old, but they have been kept largely out of public view. Fear of displaying them is apparently driven by controversy about satirical or offensive portraits of Muhammad by non-Muslims, despite the huge difference in form and purpose.

When the V&A was asked if it held any images of Muhammad after the attack on the French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo , it said there were none. A US expert later provided a link to a poster in its collection, with the inscription Mohammad the Prophet of God . That page in the database was deleted last week, but can still be found in a cached version. A spokeswoman said their original response was an honest error .

Other British institutions with images of Muhammad in their Islamic art collections show some on websites, but have shied away from exhibitions.

 

25th January

 Updated: Supporting Violent Censorship...

International events to support the censorship of Charlie hebdo
Link Here  full story: Charlie Hebdo...Censored by terrorists

Niger flag Niger

18th January 2015. See  article from  theguardian.com

At least five people died when rioters burned churches and cars and attacked French-linked businesses across Niger on Saturday, in violent protests against the publication of a cartoon of Muhammad on the cover of Charlie Hebdo magazine.

President Mahamadou Issoufou said all five of the dead were civilians, with four of them killed inside burned churches or bars.

Ten people have died in two days of violence across the west African nation. Five died and 45 were injured in clashes on Friday in Niger's second largest city, Zinder, where a French cultural centre and cafe were also hit.

mardom-e-emrooz george clooney Iran

18th January 2015. See  article from  dailymail.co.uk

An Iranian newspaper has been shut down after the country's authorities accused its front page headline of supporting the Charlie Hebdo magazine.

The article's headline quoted Hollywood actor, George Clooney, saying: I am Charlie Hebdo.

But the accompanying article did not actually express support for Clooney's statement, nor for the magazine itself.

The editor of Mardom-e-Emrooz - or Today's People - confirmed his paper was ordered to close for publishing the story.

Clooney was one of many actors to arrive at the Golden Globe awards to wear Je Suis Charlie pins.

France flag France

18th January 2015. See  article from  bbc.co.uk

Numerous French media websites have been momentarily taken down by hackers.

The sites of Le Parisien, Marianne and 20 Minutes were among those affected, although most were soon restored. The French government said some 20,000 sites had been targeted.

On Thursday, the head of cyber security for the French military, Vice Admiral Arnaud Coustilliere, said that structured groups and well known Islamist hackers were behind the attacks against the 20,000 sites, but did not elaborate.

cumhuriyet Turkey

18th January 2015. See  article from  ft.com

Turkey's prime minister has accused Turkish newspapers of sedition for publishing a controversial cartoon of Mohammed.

Ahmet Davutoglu made his comments a day after Cumhuriyet, a secularist newspaper, republished the cartoon and other extracts from Charlie Hebdo. Davutoglu  said:

The freedom of the press does not mean the freedom to insult, above all if this is against our Prophet. Printing the cartoon is heavy sedition.

Later in the day Turkish prosecutors opened an investigation into Cumhuriyet's publishing excerpts from Charlie Hebdo, in response to complaints that the paper had incited hatred.

Russia flag Update: Russia

19th January 2015. See  article from  uk.reuters.com

Russian Muslims rally against depiction's of Mohammad. Authorities say some 15 to 20 thousand people gathered at the rally in the city of Mahgas in the North Caucasus. The rally concluded peacefully but nevertheless it was still an implcit show of support for murderers.

 

Update: Australia

25th January 2015. See  article from  independent.co.uk and  article from  theguardian.com

Australia flag About 800 muslims rallied in Sydney to protest against the justifiably negative media coverage of Islam and French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo's depictions of Mohammed.

Police said 14 people were told to move on from the rally for breaching the peace. But no one was charged and the event was calm with a huge group of demonstrators praying on the street.

Some of the 800-strong demonstrators in the Lakemba suburb -- which has a large population of Lebanese Australians -- held up placards with the slogan Je suis Muslim. Other protesters held up signs saying insult to one prophet is an insult to all prophets.

Earlier Australia's prime minister, Tony Abbott, had told the protestors to lighten up . Abbott said on radio that  he hoped there would be only a few protesters:

Frankly I don't think any of us really want to be in the business of insulting anyone, but on the other hand we all believe in free speech, and I have to say some people are a bit thin-skinned about free speech.

I just hope the organisers of this protest lighten up a bit, and accept that in our robust democracy, a lot of people say a lot of things, and sometimes it's right, sometimes it's wrong, and we just have to accept the rough and the smooth together.

Update: Palestine and Senegal

25th January 2015.

'Thousands' of Palestinians rallied in the occupied West Bankto protest against the publication of cartoons depicting Mohammad. Simultaneous demonstrations were held in the cities of Ramallah and Hebron.

Around 1,500 people including the prime minister marchedin Senegal against caricatures of Mohammed. Premier Mohammed Dionne was joined at the demonstration in Dakar by cabinet colleagues, civil society activists, lawmakers, religious leaders and hundreds of members of the public. I'm not Charlie -- I am a Muslim , Freedom of expression is not the freedom to insult , Do not touch my prophet read placards brandished by demonstrators.

Update: Censored whilst claiming to be uncensored

28th January 2015.  See  article from  dailymail.co.uk

Pakistan flag Tens of thousands of Muslims took to the streets in Pakistan in anger at the Mohammed cartoons published by French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo.

The largest rally was held in Karachi, where 25,000 people shouted slogans including death to France , death to the blasphemers and (We are) ready to sacrifice life for Prophet Mohammed .

Speaking at the Karachi protest, the chief of Jamaat-e-Islami, Pakistan's main Islamic Party, demanded Pakistan call a meeting of the Organization of the Islamic Conference, a group of Muslim countries. He urged the United Nations to curb the menace of blasphemy through changes to international law.

 

25th January

 Update: Dam It! Jam It!...

One Million Moms recommend Kellogg's Pop Tarts
Link Here  full story: One Million Moms...Moralist whingers against anything sexy
kelloggs pop tarts advert Christian morality campaign group, One Million Moms has taken easy offence at a trivial Kellogg's advert. The group writes:

Kellogg's new Pop Tart commercial includes a double entendre that is inappropriate and unnecessary. Foul language or the implication of it is not needed in this commercial, but that is exactly what Kellogg's intended with their play on words.

The animated commercial has a mom pop tart and a dad pop tart admiring their newborn baby pop tart at the hospital nursery when a nurse walks in. The dialogue includes: He so has your peanut butter. Well, he's got your jelly. Then the nurse, while rubbing her hands together ready to devour the baby pop tart, says, Time for a feeding. The parents say, No! Ah, Jam It! The advertisement could have ended with No! but Kellogg's chose to include a phrase that sounded just like a curse word.

Kellogg's should be more responsible in their marketing decisions. Let them know that as a parent and consumer you are offended the company cares more about financial gain than the impression made on our children.

 

25th January

 Updated: Gandhi-Bot...

US beer makers apologise over using Gandhi's image on a beer can.
Link Here  full story: Rajan Zed...Taking easy offence at hindu imagery
gandhi boy beer New England Brewing Company, a Connecticut based craft beer company, has apologized for a Gandhi-themed brew but has not said if it plans to recall the product.

The brewer's website describes the beer as:

Gandhi-bot is an intensely-hopped double India pale ale. The beer is aromatic and fully vegetarian and an ideal choice those looking to self purify and seek out truth and love.

The packaging depicts an animated, robot-stylized Gandhi-like figure, holding his hand up in a blessing pose.

Rajan Zed, a perennial Hindu whinger, condemned the product and stated that Mahatma Gandhi abhorred drinking and trying to sell a beer named after the icon is highly damaging to his legacy.

A petition was recently filed in Hyderabad that branded the beer's offensive image as punishable under Indian law.

Matt Westfall, the head brewer apologized via a statement to the Press Trust of India news agency:

We do apologize if the good people of India find our Gandhi-Bot label offensive. Our intent is not to offend anyone but rather pay homage and celebrate a great man who we respect greatly.

However, the company has made no indication that it plans to remove the beer from its line-up.

Update: Gandhi-Bot canned

25th January 2015.See  article from  newkerala.com

A US brewery will be rebranding their beer, which uses Indian independence leader Mahatma Gandhi's name and image, after easily offended Indians expressed their 'outrage' calling the act condemnable.   The New England Brewing Company's Gandhi-Bot India pale ale features a cartoon image depicting a robot version of the Gandhi.

The brewer was sued by a lawyer in southern India, after which they apologized and said in a statement:

After careful consideration we feel that renaming Gandhi-Bot is the right move. Taking these steps will allow us to express our support for the Indian-American community while also limiting any economic losses.

The beer, which had been distributed for about 5 years, was being promoted on as fully vegetarian and an ideal aid for self-purification and the seeking of truth and love .