Cartoon censors under fire

Stringent media censorship in Thailand has again come under fire after a blogger scoffed at blurred out content in scenes from Japanese cartoons, or animes, broadcast by MCOT Channel 9.

The blogger wrote his posting in a Japanese news website on Aug 9, including in it a video clip and two images. The posting went viral and has been attracting attention from many online communities.

In the video clip, female characters from the "Sailor Moon" animation series have their swimsuits blurred out. The girl Shisuka in the popular "Doraemon" cartoon also has her swimwear edited in the same way as shown in one of the photos, while another picture portrays a young Son Goku from the classic "Dragon Ball Z" anime with his chest censored as his clothes are ripped apart during a transformation.

The blogger wrote that blurring out such lightweight material is "silly" and pointed out that many viewers do not think about anything inappropriate when they watch cartoons. However, when censorship is applied it makes audiences assume that there is something unsuitable on screen and brings the content to their attention.

A netizen commented, “Why blurred scenes in cartoons when there are shots in movies and soap operas that are much more obscene and have escaped censorship?”. Another posted, “Why regulate little things like this? 'Thailand got Talent' has contestants appearing on the programme wearing swimsuits, why are they not censored?"

Media censorship in Thailand is regarded as very strict and rather controversial, such as an image of a person pointing a gun at a person's head is blurred out, but waving it in the general direction of someone is not.

Related search: cartoons, anime, thailand censorship

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