Netflix Reveals All Its Government Censorship Incidents Over the Last 5 Years

February 9, 2020
Posted in Article
February 9, 2020 Tumelo Moloi

Netflix has recently published its annual Environmental, Social and Governance Report, documenting all the occasions when it has censored content on its streaming platform due to government requests.

According to the document, the streaming giant has taken down content on a government’s request just nine times, all of which have been made over the past five years. Singapore tops the list, removing a total of five items, including The Last Temptation of Christ — a title completely banned in the country — a Brazilian comedy called The Last Hangover, and three cannabis-related shows, as weed is illegal in the Asian country. New Zealand had Netflix remove The Bridge, which the government considers “objectionable,” while Vietnam pulled Full Metal Jacket and Germany banned Night of the Living Dead. Finally, Saudi Arabia had Netflix remove an episode of Patriot Act with Hasan Minhaj after it criticized the Middle Eastern state, which made international headlines.

Despite having taken the aforementioned content down in its respective countries, Netflix reassures that it doesn’t take these censorship demands lightly, saying that it will only do so if the company receives a written government request and cannot, in any circumstance, reach an agreement with local authorities. Where it deems necessary, the streaming service will also actively fight against those demands, as in the case of Brazil with The First Temptation of Christ, which depicts Jesus as a gay man in a religious satire. Netflix had taken the issue to court, ultimately winning the case in the country’s Supreme Court last month.

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