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Lady Gaga, Katy Perry + BSB Banned in China

Lady Gaga Katy Perry Backstreet Boys
Pool / Jemal Countess / Jason Merritt, Getty Images

Censorship alert! China’s Ministry of Culture is demanding that Chinese websites remove popular songs by dozens of international artists, including Lady Gaga, Katy Perry and the Backstreet Boys.

Last week, the ministry released a list of 100 songs that websites must remove by Sept. 15 or risk facing prosecution. The Wall Street Journal says the government did not explain the specific reasons for the removal request, but announced that the songs are “not in accordance with the Interim Provisions on Administration of Internet Culture and other regulations” and they “disrupt the online music market order and endanger national cultural security.”

The Guardian reports that six Gaga tracks from ‘Born This Way’ are being targeted: ‘Hair,’ ‘Judas,’ ‘Americano,’ ‘Marry the Night,’ ‘Bloody Mary’ and ‘The Edge of Glory.’ Being rejected by foreign governments is old hat for Gaga, whose music was also banned in Lebanon.

Gaga and Perry write provocative lyrics, so it’s somewhat understandable that China’s Ministry of Culture may find them too racy. But the Backstreet Boys? Perhaps Chinese officials have read some hidden meaning into BSB’s ‘I Want It That Way,’ because that boy band classic is also on the banned list. Other acts on the list include Britney Spears, Beyonce and Owl City.

If the Chinese Ministry of Culture believes that artists like the Backstreet Boys are a threat to Chinese cultural security, we have to wonder whether the proposed benefit concert featuring will.i.am will ever really happen, seeing as how it needs approval from the culture ministry as well.

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