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11th December
2007
  

Lady Khaisri's Lovers...

Book censorship in Thailand with cuts for sex scenes?
Culture Minister

Culture Minister
Khaisri Sri-aroon

Culture Minister Khaisri Sri-aroon yesterday said she disagreed with a proposal to cut "romantic" scenes from translated novels.

She said it would ruin the taste for readers and affirmed that she would invite national artists, academics and publishers to formulate a rating criteria.

Following the ministry's plan for book ratings - especially for romantic and translated novels - as proposed by the Publishers and Booksellers Association of Thailand (PUBAT), many public members posted their concerns that love scenes in books might be cut.

They argued that romantic scenes were not obscene as the translators and publishers used "sensitive descriptions" and urged the ministry to hear the opinions of the public and related parties before making a decision.

Khaisri said most of those who expressed opinions on the ministry's website agreed to the book rating according to readers' age but disagreed with the content cutting.

 

13th December
2007
  

Update: Ministry of Book Censors...

Thais fight back
Culture Minister

Culture Minister
Khaisri Sri-aroon

Webboards at the Culture Ministry's website have been bombarded with hundreds of supposedly lewd web links, the Culture Watch Centre has found.

The centre found more than 500 sexually-explicit web links put up on webboards run by the ministry, which has been campaigning against obscene websites. The website, www.m-culture.go.th, could not be accessed last night.

The attack on the website comes a few days after the ministry said it was contemplating censoring novels.

Culture Minister Khunying Khaisri Sri-aroon yesterday admitted that inappropriate web links had been posted on the website. She had ordered Thongchai Masattana, director of the IT centre, to explain why webmasters had failed to detect and screen out the saucy content.

Khunying Khaisri said the ministry is mulling rating various novels, particularly adult romances and translated novels.

Many complaints had come in about the ministry's bid to censor sex and erotic scenes. Romance readers argued the erotic scenes were written in beautiful language and are not morally incorrect.

Khunying Khaisri said she personally agreed that censorship would spoil the novels.

In deciding on a rating system for romance novels, the ministry would invite artists, academics, writers, publishers and distributors to give their views. The attempt to impose a ratings system is prompted in part by the arrest of two traders selling romance novels with erotic content at a book fair in October.

 

11th June
2009
  

Limited Pride...

China restricts its first mainland gay pride event

The Laramie Project DVD Chinese officials are taking steps to censor parts of China's first Gay Pride, the BBC reported.

Shanghai Pride is mainland China's first large-scale Gay Pride celebration but it does not include a march or parade. Instead organizers are holding a series of cultural events to take place at privately-owned venues.

But that's not stopping the Chinese government from banning certain events. Officials have ordered certain owners to cancel events or face severe consequences.

At ShanghaiPride.com, the event's official website, a blog post simply titled Sorry alerts readers that the film screening of the lesbian-themed Lost in You has been canceled.

The BBC reports that a second event appears to be in trouble. Officials have targeted the staging of T he Laramie Project for closure. The play reconstructs the gruesome 1998 murder of Matthew Shepard, the University of Wyoming student beaten, shackled to a post and left to die in a field by two men he had met in a gay bar.

Other events to be held throughout the week, art exhibits, food events and panel discussions, appear to remain on track. The official Gay Pride party takes place Saturday, June 13.