Chi­nese host: Travel show in Canada cen­sored

China Daily (USA) - - CHINA - By XIN­HUA

A Chi­nese talk show host has blasted the Cana­dian Tourism Com­mis­sion for what he said was an at­tempt to censor his show.

Host and mu­si­cian Gao Xiaosong said on his Sina Weibo ac­count that the re­lease of an episode on iqiyi. an on­line video plat­form, had been “de­layed in­def­i­nitely” be­cause of “strong ob­struc­tions” from the com­mis­sion.

The episode was sup­posed to be avail­able on Fri­day. Af­ter a pre­view of the episode, which in­cludes con­tent about abo­rig­i­nal peo­ple in Canada, the com­mis­sion blocked its re­lease, Gao said on Weibo, where he has nearly 40 mil­lion fol­low­ers.

Posts byGaoin­clude emails in Chi­nese from peo­ple who ap­pear to be as­so­ci­ated with the com­mis­sion.

“We have al­ways em­pha­sized not to men­tion the abo­rig­i­nal peo­ples be­cause it’s a very sen­si­tive sub­ject, and the pre­view in­cludes history that is not to be proud of,” one email said.

In an­other email, Gao said: “No mat­ter from the history or hu­man rights as­pect, we have in the meet­ing again em­pha­sized to avoid the abo­rig­i­nal peo­ples. ... This is re­ally se­ri­ous. If not worked out prop­erly, it could be up­graded to po­lit­i­cal lev­els and cause very se­ri­ous con­se­quences.”

Gao also ques­tioned the com­mis­sion’s right to weigh in on the show’s con­tent, say­ing he did not sign any con­tract with the com­mis­sion and the or­ga­ni­za­tion is not a spon­sor.

The episode in ques­tion is the sec­ond in a four-part series. The first aired ear­lier.

“As a pro­mo­tion agency for a tourism des­ti­na­tion, we hope the show will fo­cus on pro­mot­ing the des­ti­na­tion. We have only pro­vided opin­ions on amend­ing the pri­or­i­ties of the episode,” the com­mis­sion said.

Derek Galpin, the com­mis­sion’s man­ag­ing di­rec­tor for China, said he had noth­ing to add when reached by Xin­hua News Agency.

Gao was ap­par­ently un­sat­is­fied with the re­sponse.

“The com­mis­sion is not in any way a di­rect party to the show,” he said in a re­cent post. “The changes and omis­sions that the com­mis­sion de­manded ac­count for up to 20 min­utes. Even if we had a con­tract, which we don’t, the harm to the episode would be un­ac­cept­able,” Gao wrote.

Gao Xiaosong, host and mu­si­cian

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