Today, news broke that the Malaysian Film Censorship Board (LPF) said that home shopping shows are not allowed to display underwear on TV to maintain manners, decency, and the sensitivity of a multiethnic and multi-religious Malaysia.
Recently, a letter was sent by LPF to two local broadcasters instructing them to stop advertising men’s and women’s undergarments on their home shopping segments because it was inappropriate for general viewers.
LPF claims that content advertising innerwear, even if it was not worn by live models, goes against the country’s censorship guidelines.
“The Ministry is of the view that although the advertisement do not show undergarments worn live by a model and do not involve any indecent visual displays, advertising ‘undergarments’ will still offend the community, especially those related to race, religion, gender, and age.
“Furthermore, the requirement to preserve manners, decency, and the sensitivities of a multi-ethnic and multi-religious society in Malaysia is of utmost importance. Therefore, this Ministry is of the view that the aforementioned content advertising innerwear is inappropriate to be shown for general viewing,” said LPF in a notice dated 3 Sept.
LPF also explained that any and all filmed content or publicity content intended for public viewing must be approved by the board.
Citing regulations within GPPF 2010 under the Film Censorship Act 2002, LPF said its directive to both companies was based on the discharging their responsibility to ensure any form of film, broadcasted message or promotion has to remain ethical and within the set regulations.
Reportedly, both broadcasting companies have complied with LPF’s instructions. It said that both platforms had displayed men’s briefs, women’s panties and body shapers on shelves and mannequins in its TV programming.
Commenting on the issue, Communications and Multimedia Content Forum (CMCF) Executive Director Mediha Mahmood noted that there were no explicit rules against the sale of underwear on TV and ads as long as it is not indecent or obscene.
“Given the fact that the content industry has grown so much in the past few years and with the growth of e-commerce too, we see many platforms carrying advertisements in many creative ways. In the spirit of self-regulation, I believe such items should be able to be advertised as long as it is done within the parameters mentioned,” she said.