MY TAKE
My Take
by

Canada gets all protective about porn

PUBLISHED : Saturday, 29 March, 2014, 3:25am
UPDATED : Saturday, 29 March, 2014, 3:25am

In the eternal debate over whether something sexy is porn or erotica, it seems the Canadian government has cut the Gordian knot.

Porn is art, according to the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission, the country's broadcasting watchdog. How else can you explain its complaint against three pornographic cable channels for failing to meet minimum Canadian content?

Like France, Canada mandates a minimum level of home-grown content to make sure "Canadian artists have access to Canadian airwaves" and to prevent the country from being overwhelmed with cheap US productions, in this case, pornographic programmes. It has accused AOV Adult Movie Channel, AOV XXX Action Clips and AOV Maleflixxx of failing to meet the "35 per cent Canadian content" rule as well as failing to provide subtitles and captions for at least than 90 per cent of their shows. It's a constitutional right in Canada for the deaf and hard-of-hearing to watch porn and experience its full enjoyment like everyone else. Then again, does anyone care about dialogue?

I have never subscribed to those channels when visiting relatives in Canada, not even for academic research. But, in my opinion, the Canadian content of such programmes as Canadian Quickies and Men of Toronto speak for themselves. I grant you it may be more difficult to tell with other programmes such as Filthy Pervs and the Sword Masters. The commission has scheduled a hearing for the cable providers, who face losing their licences. Of course, the way to rectify the situation is to hire more Canadians as porn stars and technicians. This, presumably, is what the commission wants. If that's true, Canada dares go where no other country has gone before by recognising porn as a strategic industry worthy of protection. Perhaps any day now, it will start promoting and subsidising promising porn companies as national champions.

Hong Kong should learn from Canada, as we are always saying we need to promote the IT industry. What other industry pioneers more innovations, like e-payment, zip files and streaming videos, than porn? Of course, it could all be, as I suspect, a circuitous and stupid way to censor porn in Canada.

 

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