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Censorship: China's leadership bans 120 songs

People dance, sing and shout - it's almost unrestrained in Chinese karaoke bars. Shame boundaries are regularly crossed here, rules of behavior are ignored and that little bit of freedom is celebrated at the microphone. The leadership in Beijing apparently no longer wanted to watch this goings-on - and has now put the most dangerous songs in their eyes on the index.

On Monday, the Ministry of Culture published a detailed list of those songs that are no longer allowed to be smashed through microphones and are to be banned from the Internet and from any stage in the country within 15 days. A total of 120 songs made it onto this index. The official reason: The songs called for profanity, violence, disobedience and immorality and thus violated the laws on online culture. With the same reasoning, the regime had already banned works by Take That, Lady Gaga and Beyoncé in 2011.

But this time it was not Westerners who were considered shamelessly to be victims of the censorship, but rather Chinese and Taiwanese musicians. What do you have to do to call the censors on the scene? Swear words are a good means, but a description of a rendezvous without obligations is enough: “One Night Stand” is therefore too explicit and disreputable for the gentlemen in the Ministry of Culture. What they also don't like is mention of sex, trouble at school, suicide, social injustice, or mini skirts. The Communist Party is apparently not particularly fond of hip-hop either, where the spoken word is per se suspect.

The censors not only target the big artists, they also feel provoked by small, local bands. For them, in turn, a place on the index is like a grand prize, because the ban allows them to hope for new fans. True to the motto: What the regime displeases can only be good. And the comprehensive deletion of songs from the network is hardly feasible anyway.

Since President Xi Jinping took office, Chinese officials have acted as particularly zealous guardians of morality and society - they have already given the prospect that the list of bans could grow. A brief overview of the forbidden songs - and an approach to the question: Why on earth is the leadership in Beijing afraid of these texts?

1. "Beijing Evening News" (In3)

The band In3 was hit particularly hard - a total of 17 songs by the hip-hop musicians are on the Chinese cultural authority's blacklist. One of the three musicians even had a very good classical clarinet training in the past - before he became a rap rebel. At least as measured by the Chinese government. The musicians take it easy and celebrate their list positions like chart positions: “We are number one to 17 ...!” They posted on a social network.