Chinese Broadcasting Company Dumped by Eurovision After Censoring Ireland's Gay Entry

Casey Dawson
May 12, 2018

Both the Irish and Albanian acts qualified for the final round, which will feature 26 performances.

"It is with regret that we will therefore immediately be terminating our partnership with the broadcaster", the statement said.

It also blurred out rainbow flags and removed Albania's entry from its broadcast because of the performers' visible tattoos.

Although homosexuality was decriminalized in China in 1997, many people are still discriminated against in the country.

Some activists say there has been a recent effort to sideline the LGBT community.

Social media users in China denounced the censorship. "There are so many factors, not just the staging but also the running order and simply what all the other songs are like".

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In March, Chinese football players who had tattoos were forced to wear long sleeves or bandages to hide their ink.

A number of verified Weibo accounts shared still images of the censored performances.

Ireland's Eurovision entrant Ryan O'Shaughnessy said the decision to ban the Chinese broadcaster was a positive one.

Eurovision has always been popular with gay fans, and rainbow flags are a common sight at the final alongside those of participating nations. At the same time record industry executive and BBC music director Hugh Goldsmith set up four songwriter camps, inviting songwriters from around the world to take part, in a bid to find the best six songs for Eurovision: You Decide. "In the very start we've simply said really like would be enjoy, does not matter whether it really is among two men, two ladies, or some man and a girl", he said. He was accompanied by two male dancers during the performance that was apparently censored by Mango TV.

For the right to reach the final of the competition, fought participants from 18 countries, including the representative of Ukraine Melovin.

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