Streaming platform iQiyi has cut access to its boy's love (BL) dramas for viewers in Singapore.
In response to Mothership's queries, iQiyi confirmed that it had removed the entire catalogue of BL dramas.
A spokesperson for iQiyi's international platform highlighted that this was done in compliance with the Infocomm Media Development Authority’s (IMDA) guidance towards LBGTQ-themed content.
BL shows, as its name suggests, depict romantic relationships between men.
The genre has grown increasingly popular in Thailand, Taiwan, and more recently, South Korea.
What does IMDA's guidelines say?
According to IMDA's guidelines, films that depict "alternative sexualities" such as homosexuality should be sensitive to community values.
Films that centre on alternative sexualities may be classified at the highest rating of R21, IMDA added.
As for non-explicit depictions of sexual activity between persons of the same gender, these may be featured if rated a R21 rating.
A film may be rated M18 if it features a discreet and non-gratuitous homosexual theme or content as a sub-plot.
In the case of a film that promotes homosexuality or contains excessive depictions of sexual activity between individuals of the same gender, these will be refused classification.
In addition, service providers can offer R21 content only if they implement a reliable age verification mechanism.
IMDA highlighted, "All R21 content must be locked by default, and should only be accessible to users for purchasing or viewing via R21 pin. R21 content must not be offered for free."
Mothership.sg understands that all R21 content, besides the BL genre that currently are not locked via R21 pin, have been made inaccessible.
Top screenshots via iQiyi website