×

Justin Timberlake Nudity-Laced Music Video Briefly Yanked by YouTube

Singer's explicit video for 'Tunnel Vision' pulled down before being restored on Vevo's YouTube channel

In the music biz, getting “banned by YouTube” appears to be becoming a popular strategy for going viral.

Justin Timberlake is the latest artist to post a video that is just outré enough to violate YouTube’s policies against nudity and other inappropriate content.

An explicit version of his music video for “Tunnel Vision,” featuring numerous topless female models, was posted Wednesday on YouTube — and the service promptly removed it because of the nudity.

However, several hours later, YouTube made the video available with an age-restriction warning. The clip is viewable on Vevo’s YouTube channel, after users click through prompts warning them that it has been flagged as “being potentially offensive or inappropriate.” At various points in the video, Timberlake’s visage is projected onto the bare torsos of the women.

In a statement, YouTube said, “While our Guidelines generally prohibit nudity, we make exceptions when it is presented in an educational, documentary or artistic context, and take care to add appropriate warnings and age-restrictions.”

Since going online Wednesday, the explicit version of “Tunnel Vision” has garnered more than 1.1 million views. (The nudity-free version, available since mid-March, has just over 581,000 views.) The R-rated video also is available on the singer/actor’s website, justintimberlake.com, through Vevo.

Timberlake’s “Tunnel Vision” naked video play comes after YouTube in May pulled down David Bowie’s bloody and heavily religious-themed video for “The Next Day” (before the site reinstated it). Prior to that, YouTube removed Robin Thicke’s “Blurred Lines” video featuring fully nude models.

This fall, Timberlake is set to launch a world tour for his latest album, “The 20/20 Experience,” which was released in March by RCA Records.

Separately, YouTube earlier this week confirmed that it has taken an equity stake in Vevo, which is majority owned by Sony Music Entertainment and Universal Music Group.

SEE ALSO: YouTube Accused of Profiting From Videos Promoting Illegal Drugs, Other Illicit Activity

More Music

  • WOODSTOCK 99

    Woodstock '99: Remembering the Chaos 20 Years Later

    Woodstock’s stalled-before-it-started 50th anniversary celebration has taken over much of the news cycle this summer, but some of us haven’t forgotten the disaster that was Woodstock ’99, which kicked off its main stage 20 years ago today. The planned 30th anniversary of the most famous music festival in history started with good intentions, but quickly [...]

  • Taylor Swift Finally Turns 'Red' With

    Taylor Swift Turns 'Red' Again With Third Song from New Album: 'The Archer' (Listen)

    Taylor Swift fans have had a very faith-based relationship with the new material she’s rolled out in advance of her new album — having faith that the album would really be as intimate and personal as promised, after the mindful froth-pop of the first two singles, “Me!” and “You Need to Calm Down.” That faith [...]

  • Maluma

    A Reluctant Maluma Finally Finds the Screen Role He's Been Waiting for

    It seems like everyone wants a piece of Maluma these days, but the 25-year-old Colombian superstar has played hard to get when it comes to making the transition to the big screen. The singer has been picky in turning down possible crossovers — but an offer to be paired with Jennifer Lopez has caught his [...]

  • BTS61st Annual Grammy Awards, Arrivals, Los

    MTV VMAs Have Created a K-Pop Category ... and Some BTS Fans Are Livid About It

    The MTV Video Music Awards have added a new K-pop category this year, but if you thought that expansion would please a plurality of BTS fans, think again. BTS fans have taken to Twitter and other social media to charge that it’s actually a racist or xenophobic move designed to ghettoize their favorite group and [...]

  • Lizzo Warner Chappell

    Lizzo Signs Publishing Admin Deal With Warner Chappell

    Lizzo has signed a global administration deal with Warner Chappell Music. The agreement covers her existing and future work, including the breakout hit “Juice” and follow-up “Truth Hurts” from debut album “Cuz I Love You.” Speaking to Variety of the success of “Truth Hurts,” Lizzo recently said: “I love being platinum. I worked so hard. [...]

  • Dr Dre Selling Woodland Hills Mansion

    Dr. Dre Seeks Sale of Woodland Hills Mansion

    A lavish mansion in a quietly ritzy, guard-gated enclave discreetly nestled into the rugged foothills above L.A.’s Woodland Hills, long owned by Andre Young, aka rapper, record producer and near-billionaire entrepreneur Dr. Dre, has come for sale at $5.25 million. Dre himself, worth about $800 million, according to Forbes, hopes to more than double his [...]

  • Iggy Azalea

    Iggy Azalea on Album Delays, Twerk Pits, Trolling and Going 'More Tongue-in-Cheek'

    Iggy Azalea just unleashed her first album in five years, and the title speaks for itself. “In My Defense” sees the Australian pop star talking back, taking control of her masters and giving self-confidence to her fan base across the world. Azalea — real name: Amethyst Amelia Kelly — made a name for herself with [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content