KUALA LUMPUR, Nov 30 ― A PAS federal lawmaker has asked the government to censor LGBTQ shows or “sexual content” aired by streaming service provider Netflix.
Dungun Member of Parliament Wan Hassan Mohd Ramli raised the matter during Question Time this morning. PAS has long fought for strict punishment against the LGBTQ community, and have pushed for laws to “ban” them.
Communications and Multimedia Minister Tan Sri Annuar Musa replied by acknowledging concerns about the absence of censorship for shows aired on Netflix, but said Malaysian authorities are powerless to regulate content streamed from abroad.
“To answer your question, we have to admit that we face difficulty (to regulate) streaming services including Netflix,” Annuar said.
“Netflix is an over-the-top service provider that streams internet-based multimedia content from abroad and many of the service providers are difficult to be regulated fully,” he added.
Conservatives have long sought to censor the internet, claiming the platform promotes immoral behaviour if not regulated. Rights groups have responded by warning that internet censorship would curb free expression and silence dissent.
Past administrations have so far refused to cave in, but often on technical grounds.
Annuar’s predecessor, Datuk Seri Saifuddin Abdullah, had vowed that no attempt to censor the internet would succeed under his watch.
Annuar made no such pledge today, but told the Dewan Rakyat this morning that streaming service providers like Netflix have a parental guidance ratings system in place, and that regulation can be made voluntarily.