KUALA LUMPUR, Sept 15, 2015

Clothing that reveals the figures of women, including the visible shape of their breasts, nether regions, buttocks and undergarments, would be snipped out of television shows under new guidelines implemented recently.

These were among new criteria set in a circular on Special Guidelines for Television Film Censorship, which was enforced by the Film Censorship Board (FCB) from June 15, 2015.

However, the board had made the exception towards Indian women who donned the traditional sari.

Scenes depicting men or women wearing clothing that revealed the shapes of their sexual organs would also be taken out, except when it involved sports activities.

Despite the blanket ban on certain elements within free-to-air or paid television shows, some rulings will differ, depending on whether it is a Malay, Chinese, Indian or English entertainment programme.

For example, on the “Perilaku Kurang Sopan” (“Inappropriate Behaviour”) element in the shows, the act of lying down or leaning on the lap of a lover would be censored in Malay shows while there would be no restrictions for shows in other languages.

“Excessive” use of weaponry such as firearms or sharp objects used to perform the act of killing will also be censored.

Censoring also applied to the use of the firearms or sharp objects, such as knives which were used to threaten a victim in the plot.

Exerting physical harm on women and children would also be cut, and the same applied to scenes showing the abuse of animals.

As for derogatory words in dialogues, “Anjing” (dog), “Babi” (pig) and “Pelacur” (prostitute) were among those banned and categorised as “heavy” insults.

Surprisingly, the word “Beruk Mak Yeh”, that described a humorous ape character in defunct Malay comic Ujang, was also added to the list of banned words.

In English, the words cunnilingus and fellatio would be censored, among other “indecent”words.

Any scene that showed the interaction between humans and spirits or djinns that were physically present would be cut for Malay shows. The ruling was spared on shows in other languages.

However, acts with “bomoh” rituals, such as casting of spells, would not be cut provided they were not mixed with verses contained in the Quran.

Acts showing “deviant teachings” without any form of retribution or punishment would also be banned.

Earlier today, the board’s chairman, Datuk Abdul Halim Abdul Hamid, said the circular provided guidelines to television stations involved in the censorship process of local films.

“For now, the Film Censorship Act 2002 (Act 620) and 2010 Film Censorship Guidelines were made as reference documents when board members conducted censorship of films, whether at the board’s headquarters or television stations.

“As an addition to the two main documents mentioned, the FCB released the special guidelines for the censorship of cinema films, television station VODs (videos) and sales,” he said in a question-and-answer session with local television representatives and local filmmakers.

Abdul Halim added that for television channels, the main aspects used as the basis for censorship were safety and peace of the public, religion and socio-cultural factors.

“The censorship guidelines for television stations were amended for the use of all television stations, be it free-to-air or paid.”

Abdul Halim further explained that the guidelines were framed by taking into account many factors of the viewers, including age groups, religion and race.

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