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Singapore Clamps Down On Gay Web Sites


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Singapore Clamps Down On Gay Web Sites

by Peter Hacker 365Gay.com Asia Bureau Chief

Posted: October 28, 2005 11:00 am ET

(Singapore) Singapore dealt another blow to the city-state's LGBT community on Friday banning one gay Web site and fining another.

The government controls the internet through its Media Development Authority. The MDA said that both sites - one based in Singapore, the other overseas - contained offensive material.

It said that it acted after receiving complaints about the two companies. An MDA investigation found what the agency called content "promoting a promiscuous homosexual lifestyle".

Both sites contained information on dating and hookups and had nude photographs. The offshore site, which was not publicly named, was also accused of trying to recruit underage boys for sex - a charge often leveled by the government against gays.

Homosexuality is illegal in Singapore. In addition it bans nude images on the internet.

The government cannot prosecute the offshore company, but the local Web site, identified as "Meet Gay Singapore Friends", was fined $3,000 (US) and warned it would be closed down if it did not remove the offensive material. The company said on Friday it would comply.

Despite the criminalization of homosexuality Singapore's government has made continued statements that it does not discriminate against gays

High-ranking Singapore officials have blamed gay events for rising HIV infections. The country also has banned Asia's largest gay-themed party, Nation '05, from its shores. The event has been moved to Thailand.

In August the The government issued a warning to gays traveling to Singapore that they could face imprisonment if they are caught having gay sex.

©365Gay.com 2005


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