Aceh Province bands outdoor music concerts under an interpretation of Sharia law
General , Licensing , Live Events / May 2016

LICENSING Live events sector     Outdoor music concerts have been banned in a Regency in Indonesia’s conservative Aceh province on the grounds they violate Sharia law. New regulations – including a ban on women straddling motorcycles (they must ride side-saddle), unaccompanied women working or visiting night spots after 23.00 – as well and a requirement that boys and girls are taught separately at school – have been introduced in different parts of Aceh in recent years. he province, the only part of Indonesia that enforces Sharia law, also outlaws gambling, drinking and even fraternising with the opposite sex outside marriage. Muslim women must wear a hijab in public and gay sex is punishable by 100 lashes of the cane. The outdoor music ban comes after local singing sensation Ady Bergek was told he could not proceed with a concert on April 3rd because it would violate Sharia law. Bergek (whose name means unruly in the Acehnese language) is famous for his take on Dangdut, a genre that borrows from traditional Indonesian music as well as from Indian and Malaysian films. West Aceh Regent (Bupati) Teuku Alaidinsyah was quoted in Kompas saying the ban was based on a recommendation by Ulema (a body of Muslim…

Gaga faces South East Asian backlash
Censorship , Live Events / June 2012

CENSORSHIP Live events industry Lady Gaga’s ‘Born This Way Ball’ tour of South East Asia has hit problems in the Philippines with Christian groups joining Muslim protests against her concerts. In particular Christians have said that they are appalled by the use of a crucifix in “a very denigrating manner” as were the lyrics as one of her songs “where she is belittling Jesus Christ himself and praising Judas as heroic. It us understood the concerts in Manilla will monitored for any hint of “blasphemy, devil worship, nudity or lewd conduct”.    40,000 fans in the Catholic-majority nation have snapped up tickets of up to 15,840 pesos ($370) each to watch the U.S. singer perform in Manila. Police in Indonesia had already halted what would have been the biggest concert on her Asian tour after fears that her sexual imagery and risque dance routines would undermine Islamic values and corrupt youth. Muslim hardliners under the Islamic Defenders Front banner claimed the Born This Way Ball would undermine the country’s moral fibre and had planned to blocade the country’s airport. The 52,000 capacity show at the Gelora Bung Karno Stadium was scheduled for June 3rd, promoted by Big Daddy Promotions. The IDF’s Salim Alatas told reporters  “She’s a vulgar…

Aceh police enforce strict code on punk rock fans
Censorship , Live Events / January 2012

CENSORSHIP Live events Police in Indonesia’s Aceh province are enforcing a strict Islamic code and authorities recently rounded up 65 male and female punk-rock fans after a concert for “re-education.” That meant having their mohawks and dreadlocks shaved, their clothes destroyed and their piercings removed “before they were paraded around like crime suspects” and then forced to sit in a muddy pool for what police called “spiritual cleansing.”  The fans were then detained for ten days. The fans have now alleged harassment but the authorities say they’ve done nothing wrong: “We’re not torturing anyone. We’re not violating human rights,” the provincial police chief said “We’re just trying to put them back on the right moral path.” In 2005, after years of armed rebellion, residents of secular Aceh province on the island of Sumatra were granted permission to impose strict sharia, or Islamic law, to better promote moral values in the now-semiautonomous province. Religious police can now enforce the codes where adultery is punishable by stoning and homosexuals have been jailed or lashed in public with canes. Human Rights groups have also complained that women are told they must wear head scarves and cannot dress in tight pants.  “Why? Why my hair?!” called out one 20-year-old fan said…

Indonesian star jailed over sex tape
Artists , Censorship / March 2011

CENSORSHIP Artistes Nazril ‘Ariel’ Irham, the Indonesian pop star, has been jailed for three and a half years in his after video footage seemingly showing him having sex with various celebrity girlfriends circulated on the internet. Irham, of Indonesian boy band Peterpan, was prosecuted under strict anti-pornography laws passed in the country in 2008, which ban public displays of nudity and behaviour that could “incite lust” despite the fact it seems the video was circulated after his laptop was stolen. Irham denied the charges and denied being in the tape but the  judge ruled “the defendant is legitimately and convincingly guilty of giving chances for others to spread, make and provide pornography”.  A massive police presence was needed to keep order at the court where a large crowd of the pop star’s fans were outraged at the sentence. Representatives from Muslim groups were angered that the outcome wasn’t more severe.  CMU Daily 1st February

Kelly Clarkson concert ‘banned’ by cleric because of smoking tie-up
Live Events / May 2010

RELIGIOUS LAW Live events industry Muslim organization Muhammadiyah has forbidden the upcoming Jakarta concert by US entertainer Kelly Clarkson because it promotes smoking. Yanuar Ilyas, head of the fatwa department at Muhammadiyah, Indonesia’s second largest Muslim organization, said as it had previously declared smoking haram (forbidden), all things related to it were also forbidden, adding that it was not necessary to issue a new fatwa (religious edict). “We do not need to put another fatwa on a thing that is already clear,” Yanuar told the Jakarta Globe. The ban will have little impact on the concert actually going ahead, however, with the vast majority of religious rulings ignored. A spokeswoman for promoters JAVA Musikindo said they were discussing the controversy and were expecting to make a statement soon. Promoter Adrie Subono tweeted that “2,513 of my hairs fell out, I have a headache.” The controversy has also had an impact in the USA where the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids said “If Kelly Clarkson goes ahead with the concert, she is by choice being a spokesman for the tobacco industry and helping them to market to children”.  In 2008, Alicia Keys was forced to “apologise for any misleading advertising initially associated with the show”…

US puts Canada on the naughty step
Copyright / June 2009

COPYRIGHT All areas The US has added Canada to a list of its top twelve of countries which persistently fail to protect intellectual property rights alongside China, Russia, Algeria, Argentina, Chile, India, Indonesia, Israel, Pakistan, Thailand and Venezuela  While there has been much criticism in the past from the US and elsewhere regarding Canada’s copyright laws, and their failure to take on physical bootleggers as well as the ever growing population of online pirates, it is the first time the Americans have put their Northern neighbours on their “priority watch list” of IP abusers. The report from the US Trade Representative that revealed Canada had been added to the watch list noted: “We urge Canada to enact legislation in the near term to strengthen its copyright laws and implement relevant World Intellectual Property Organisation treaties [which Canada signed up to over a decade ago but never incorporated into its copyright laws]. The United States also continues to urge Canada to improve its IP enforcement system to enable authorities to take effective action against the trade in counterfeit and pirated products within Canada, as well as curb the volume of infringing products transshipped and transiting through Canada”. Read more on ‘At…