×

Singapore Relaxes Censorship for OTT Platforms

Singapore’s Media Development Authority has relaxed its rules to allow ‘R21’ rated TV series such as “Game of Thrones” and movies such as “Pulp Fiction” or “Fifty Shades of Grey” to be shown on online streaming services.

Such content must, however, be kept behind parental locks that are accessible only with a PIN code. And users must prove their age.

The new rules were quietly uploaded to the MDA’s website earlier this month under the heading “Information Circular in respect of MDA’s Required Baseline Safeguards for Over-The-Top Content Services Offering R21 Content.”

Before the rule change shows such as “Game of Game of Thrones” had to be cut to fit M18 ratings requirements on OTT services. In 2012 the online video stores operated in Singapore by Apple and Google were found to be streaming R21 content, and were required to take it down.

The new rules are intended to bring OTT platforms in line with the streaming video services provided by pay-TV providers via cable and home Internet connections. They are also an acknowledgement that Singapore’s Internet users frequently navigated onto pirate or overseas sites in order to skirt around the country’s content restrictions.

Local OTT providers had lobbied for such a change and had complained that Netflix, which launched in January in Singapore, was able to screen uncut R21-rated shows including “Orange Is The New Black,” and “Marco Polo” with a PIN code.

More Digital

  • SAG-AFTRA HQ

    SAG-AFTRA Ends Long Strike Against Ad Agency Bartle Bogle Hegarty

    SAG-AFTRA has ended its 10-month strike against Bartle Bogle Hegarty after the advertising agency agreed to sign the union’s new commercials contract. The union instructed its 160,000 members in September not to accept any work for BBH, which had been signed to SAG-AFTRA’s commercials contracts since 1999. The strike came two weeks after BBH publicly [...]

  • FaceApp is displayed on an iPhone,

    SAG-AFTRA Warns Members About FaceApp Terms of Use

    SAG-AFTRA is warning its 160,000 members about the “overreaching and invasive” terms of use for the FaceApp mobile application. FaceApp, developed by Russian company Wireless Lab, uses neural network technology to automatically generate transformations of faces in photographs. The app can be used to make users appear older, younger, or change gender. The terms include [...]

  • J. Cole

    Apple Music Launches 'Rap Life' Playlist

    Apple Music announced the launch of “Rap Life,” a new global playlist focusing on contemporary rap artists and culture. It replaces the former “The A-List: Hip-Hop” playlist. Said Ebro Darden, Apple Music’s Global Editorial Head of Hip-Hop and R&B: “We flipped it to dig deeper into into the lifestyle [and to] keep pushing the culture [...]

  • Billie Eilish

    ARRI, Mobile TV Group Back New Venture Revitalizing Streamed Concerts

    A new venture looking to bring a fresh approach to live-streaming concerts has gotten the backing of hardware heavyweights ARRI and Mobile TV Group. Wide+Close is launching with the mandate of shooting music performances with film cameras and cinematographers in order to give the content a more cinematic feel. “We want to take concert filming [...]

  • Fortnite Battle Royale

    How 'Fortnite' Fans Can Earn Loot by Watching YouTube Videos

    Epic Games and YouTube have teamed up with a special offer for “Fortnite” players — giving players of the popular battle-royale game rewards when they watch “Fortnite”-premiered content on the video platform. The catch: You have to watch at least 20 minutes of “Fortnite” special content or live esports broadcasts to receive the loot. Under [...]

  • Roku headquarters

    Roku Plans to Expand to Brazil, Other Countries (EXCLUSIVE)

    Roku plans to expand to multiple new territories in the coming months, Variety has learned. One of the first new markets for the company will likely be Brazil. An international expansion could help Roku grow its customer base, which in turn should lead to growing advertising revenues. Roku executives have been hinting at plans to [...]

  • Google Stadia Pro to Include 1

    Google’s Stadia Game Streaming Service to Include Free Monthly Game

    Google has been busy sharing additional details about its upcoming game streaming service Stadia, clearing up some confusion in the process. Stadia’s pro subscription tier, which will cost $10 per month, won’t be a Netflix-type subscription service. However, subscribers will get free games at the rate of about a title per month. That’s according to [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content