“Winter is coming for fans of the hit television series Game of Thrones, with the final season set to hit screens around the world after a near two-year hiatus,” reports the South China Morning Post. There were 96 million views for a discussion about the show on China’s Twitter-like platform Weibo.
“But those watching inside China are also bracing for the chill of censorship.”
In recent years, Chinese authorities have ramped up the pressure on the television and film industries to clean up content they deem vulgar or politically incorrect. This has led to some serious censorship of foreign productions. Recent examples include the removal of scenes of smashed heads and bare flesh from the American superhero film Logan, and the apparent manipulation of a scene in Oscar-winner The Shape of Water so that a naked woman is made to appear to be wearing clothes…
In a bid to get around the censorship, many Chinese Game of Thrones fans have turned to virtual private networks and torrent download websites to access unexpurgated versions of their favourite episodes.
Tencent Video holds the exclusive distribution rights for the show in China, leaving one Weibo user to post “I’m begging Father Tencent not to censor too much, thank you.”
Another added “This censored version is not interesting. I would pay money to watch the uncut version.”
Read more of this story at Slashdot.