Monday, June 24, 2024

Hong Kong to Continue Monitoring Internet Platforms for Violations of Protest Song Ban

Hong Kong’s Leader Monitoring Compliance with Ban on Protest Song

Hong Kong’s leader, Chief Executive John Lee, has made it clear that his administration will be closely monitoring for any violations of a court order banning the popular protest song “Glory to Hong Kong.” This move comes after YouTube blocked access to numerous videos of the tune in the city, in compliance with the ban.

The court order prohibits the broadcasting or distribution of “Glory to Hong Kong” with the intention of advocating for the city’s separation from China. It also forbids any actions that misrepresent the song as the national anthem in order to insult it. Chief Executive John Lee emphasized that the government will notify internet platforms of any instances of non-compliance with the injunction.

Critics have expressed concerns over the implications of this ban on freedom of expression and internet freedom in the city. There are also fears that it could impact the operations of tech giants and undermine Hong Kong’s status as a global financial hub.

Last week, YouTube blocked access to 32 videos of the song, which were deemed “prohibited publications” under the court injunction. Despite this, the song can still be found on platforms like Spotify and Apple Music. It remains uncertain whether these tech giants will block access to more video and audio clips of the song for Hong Kong viewers.

“Glory to Hong Kong” is widely regarded as the anthem of the 2019 protest movement in Hong Kong. Instances where the song was mistakenly played as the city’s anthem at international sporting events, instead of China’s national anthem, have also sparked controversy.

The situation continues to evolve, with the government monitoring for compliance and tech companies considering their options in response to the court order. The implications of this ban on freedom of expression and the future of internet freedom in Hong Kong remain at the forefront of discussions.

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