My Blog about all things Cute and Internet
My Blog about all things Cute, Internet, Anime, Cosplay and World Policitics (it’s pretty broad eh?)

Hong Kong practices further censorship in the name of indecency

Although no ruling was made on the case of the Bible being ruled as indecency, a picture hosted on Flickr and posted on a Hong Kong website that shows a pair of naked breasts. As I am in Hong Kong I can not see this photo, because it has been blocked by the authorities of Hong Kong (requesting Flickr to do so). I found another blog that has a "censored" version without the photo, see below, it looks like a very artistic impression. Why Flickr, a Yahoo service, would continue to allow censorship given its previous PR fiasco by assisting the Chinese government to send its users to Jail indicates to me that Yahoo has learned nothing from its experience in China. We don’t trust you Yahoo, I don’t use your service and while I have liked Flickr when it was independent, I no longer will use your services.

To quote boing boing that summarized it quite well: founder and activist Oiwan Lam decided, as an act of electronic civil disobedience, to protest the Obscene Articles Tribunal of the Honk Kong Television and Entertainment Licensing Authority (TELA) and their classification of articles as obscene for publishing hyperlinks to erotic photography on flickr and other sites. Lam then wrote an essay criticizing the Authority and linking to a tasteful photography found by searching the keywork ‘nude’ on flickr. The result was a quick response from the TELA, and the classification of the article as a Class II indecent article by the Obscene Articles Tribunal. The maximum penalty is HK$400,000 and 12 months in jail.

Here reasons for doing so are explained in her own post here. What concerns me more however is that in the name of indecency Hong Kong gets to practice actual censorship. People will be reported for posting "indecent" material and will be blocked, fined, bullied and scared so that they cooperate with the ulterior motive - to be compliant, not just with the law, but with the facade of law so that we may pretend that Hong Kong is actually free and liberal. Hong Kong is quite free and liberal today, but keep this up and freedom and liberties will directly affect business, economy and quality of life. Someone needs to explain that to the authorities.

The headlines and covers of Apple Daily, Easyfinder, Next Media both online and offline are covered with women in far more suggestive (and derogatory) positions and gestures in far more public display than this image. If it’s about displaying the nipple, then request they be "marked" but don’t block an entire Flickr account or punish a user. Someone wants us to feel afraid of posting thoughts and opinions online in Hong Kong - phooey.

8 Responses to “Hong Kong practices further censorship in the name of indecency”

  1. Postings on Anime, Stuff and the Internet » Blog Archive » Hong Kong Poster censored for posting “art image” containing nudity Says:

    […] came across this writeup on a recent case of censorship on the web over supposed […]

  2. My Blog about all things Cute and Internet » Blog Archive » Oiwan vs. Indecency Charge and Flickr Censorship Says:

    […] it’s "adult" Flickr users as a form of protest against what happened to Oiwan on my previous post on this matter, meanwhile there was an interview by BBC with Oiwan on this, worth listening […]

  3. Jakob Says:

    This is exactly what I expected to find out after reading the title Hong Kong practices further censorship in the name of indecency. Thanks for informative article

  4. My Blog about all things Cute and Internet » Blog Archive » Hello Kitty Cosplay with Naked Style Says:

    […] pun intended. Hopefully the Government Censors won’t be grabbing me for this one, oh wait, no nipple, so I guess it’s safe but maybe […]

  5. Daniel Says:

    I have to say, that I could not agree with you in 100% regarding Hong Kong practices further censorship in the name of indecency, but it’s just my opinion, which could be wrong :)

  6. Daniel Says:

    I couldn’t understand some parts of this article Hong Kong practices further censorship in the name of indecency, but I guess I just need to check some more resources regarding this, because it sounds interesting.

  7. Outblaze Blog Says:

    Hong Kong Essay: Mammillaphobia, or Fear of Nipples

    Do you think this Flickr picture is indecent? The Television and Entertainment Licensing Authority (TELA) and the Obscene Articles Tribunal (OAT) of Hong Kong argue that it is, and are ready to prosecute Oiwan Lam over it. Oiwan Lam is a Hong Kong wo…

  8. HongKong Says:

    Do you like HK? The name Hong Kong means in the Chinese language the “Fragrant Port”. How did this place come to have such a beautiful name? There are several different legends about the origin of this name. The most reliable one according to popular opinion is that this place was once a port for the transit and distribution of incense, which is an aromatic substance, such as a gum or wood, that burns with a pleasant odor. Do you want to know more, read this article

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