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24 May 2018

Malaysia Blocks 'Utopia Asia' Online Site

The Bangkok-based site has long been a provider of information on HIV and sexual health.

 

Internet service providers are re-routing visitors attempting to reach an information hub on HIV and sexual health in Malaysia, Gay Star News reported.
For more than 20 years, Utopia-Asia.com—with both Thai and Singaporean founders—has been a source of travel tips and updates for the LGBT community in Asia. However, censors in Malaysia have recently stopped web users from viewing the site, instead providing a message that an error had occurred in their attempts to load it.
Malaysian media watchdog the Sinar Project first reported the block earlier this month.
"It's telling that Malaysia, rather than banning hardcore sex sites, decided to bully an LGBT community page recommended over the years by TIME Magazine, The New York Times, and Lonely Planet," Utopia Asia founder John Goss originally told PR Web.
A longtime HIV consultant described discrimination against the LGBT community in Malaysia as "appalling" to PR Web. Gay Star News classified the incident as the "first example of restricting content online" concerning the queer community in the country.

 

Internet service providers are re-routing visitors attempting to reach an information hub on HIV and sexual health in Malaysia, Gay Star News reported.

For more than 20 years, Utopia-Asia.com—with both Thai and Singaporean founders—has been a source of travel tips and updates for the LGBT community in Asia. However, censors in Malaysia have recently stopped web users from viewing the site, instead providing a message that an error had occurred in their attempts to load it.

Malaysian media watchdog the Sinar Project first reported the block earlier this month.

"It's telling that Malaysia, rather than banning hardcore sex sites, decided to bully an LGBT community page recommended over the years by TIME Magazine, The New York Times, and Lonely Planet," Utopia Asia founder John Goss originally told PR Web.

A longtime HIV consultant described discrimination against the LGBT community in Malaysia as "appalling" to PR Web. Gay Star News classified the incident as the "first example of restricting content online" concerning the queer community in the country.

Malaysia

Reader's Comments

1. 2018-05-25 19:47  
myby malaysia is becomeing like indonesia and its double standards as there are so many gay muslims myby if muslims stand up more for there gay rights and dont let straight muslims tell you how to live
2. 2018-05-26 01:56  
I agree with you lastman2. It takes people from within to create a permanent change in culture and thinking. The gay people of Malaysia needs to stay strong and work toward equal rights for all.
3. 2018-05-26 17:16  
If the site contains other content banned in Malaysia then it's right to ban it.

An enterprising Malaysian could easily mirror the info on hiv, sexual health etc.. Add some adverts and it's a win all round.

Gays must always feel victimised however!!!!! Lol
4. 2018-05-27 07:19  
i guess its only a matter off time befor malaysia bans all gay websites they need to except there are so many gay muslims in malaysia
5. 2018-05-28 14:54

The new Malaysian government is promising freedom of speech, and the new Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Minister Gobind Singh Deo
is very much into free-ing up the media . It would be a good idea for Malaysians to write/contact him directly as soon as possible.

At this moment in time, when the old govt. has been toppled, the new govt. wants to prove that it practices what it preaches, and that includes freedom of speech and equality for all Malaysians

It would be interesting to see if this would be extended to include equal rights for gay and lesbian Malaysians.

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