Lady Gaga, Beyoncé, the Backstreet Boys Deemed Threats to China’s ‘National Cultural Security’


China's Ministry of Culture released a new list of songs that Chinese websites cannot legally distribute, including jams from Lady Gaga, Katy Perry, and the Backstreet Boys, because they pose a threat to China's "national cultural security." The Ministry isn't going after content, per se; the official objection to the songs is that they were never submitted for the required government approval and registration. It's almost as if oppressive regimes can be capricious and difficult to understand, particularly from the outside! This list of 100 songs — including six Gaga tracks, a smattering of Owl City and Simple Plan tunes, and "Run the World (Girls)," Britney Spears's "Burning It Up," and three Natalie Walker songs — is in bizarre company with other banned music in China: "Jingle Bells," a Chinese cover of "My Heart Will Go On," several Avril Lavigne songs, and a bunch of Christina Aguilera ditties. Who would have thought "I Want It That Way" would someday come to represent all the freedoms most Americans take for granted? Not Nick Carter, probably. Maybe AJ, though. [Globe and Mail]