Lady Gaga, Beyonce, Katy Perry and Britney Spears have endangered Chinese cultural safety, according to the country’s government. The four entertainers’ songs, along with tunes from The Backstreet Boys and various other entertainers were placed onto a blacklist where their music will be banned from any websites stemming from the country.
The Chinese ministry of culture called for the removal of 100 songs by September 15, with a penalty for those who do not adhere to the rules.
“Certain websites have been allowing users to play, listen to and download the listed songs,” the ministry said in a statement, according to CNN reports. “Such actions have disturbed the online music market order and endangered national cultural safety.”
The ministry began regulating digital music in the country two years ago, according to CNN reports. In order to be featured online in China, the ministry mandates that the music must be approved by the Chinese government after being translated in the country’s native tongue.
The reasoning for this is to ensure that indecent music is eliminated and is not able to adversely influence the Chinese community.
Although Jession Liu, a fan of Lady Gaga, said he is not surprised by the decision to ban her music. However, he did not agree with the decision.
“This ban is really over the top,” Liu said. “But the authorities have never liked Gaga’s songs or style for ideological reasons.”
Some musicians are baffled by the banning of their music. Hins Cheung , a Hong Kong singer with three banned songs, vented about the mandate on the Chinese social network, Weibo.
“My songs don’t talk about politics or religion – how are they able to endanger national cultural safety,” Cheung questioned.
However, the cultural ministry said the ban may not reflect indecent material in some music.
“Our targets this time are online music products that we have not registered or reviewed,” the cultural ministry told CNN. “They don’t necessarily contain illegal content.”