Four things banned in Singapore

(Clockwise from top left) Electronic cigarettes, extramarital dating site Ashley Madison, Playboy magazine and chewing gum are some things banned in Singapore. -- PHOTOS: ST FILE, INTERNET
(Clockwise from top left) Electronic cigarettes, extramarital dating site Ashley Madison, Playboy magazine and chewing gum are some things banned in Singapore. -- PHOTOS: ST FILE, INTERNET

Singapore has barred self-proclaimed "pick-up artist" Julien Blanc from entering the country. The dating coach claims to teach men how to attract women, but his methods have been widely viewed as abusive and an online petition was launched here calling for him to be banned.

Here are some other bans the Republic has imposed:

1. Electronic cigarettes

Under the Tobacco Act, the import, distribution, sale or offer for sale of anything that resembles a tobacco product is prohibited. Buying e-cigarettes from overseas websites or bringing them into the country in hand luggage is also considered importing, which is illegal. Offenders may be fined up to $5,000 for the first time, and up to $10,000 subsequently.

2. Extramarital dating site Ashley Madison

The Media Development Authority banned the site last November, saying it constituted an attack on "our family values and public morality". The Canada-based website promotes adulterous affairs on the basis that "life is short".

3. Playboy magazine

The magazines which feature nude picture spreads has been banned here since 1982 for allegedly promoting promiscuous values among women. A similar ban on American magazine Cosmopolitan was, however, lifted in 2003 after 20 years.

4. Chewing gum

In 1992, Singapore's leaders banned the sale of chewing gum here, saying then that discarded gum sticks to walls and pavements, and is expensive and difficult to clean up. Gum stuck on the doors of MRT trains could also delay train services, they said. The Government partially lifted the ban in 2004 to allow the sale of chewing gum used for health reasons, such as nicotine gum to help those trying to quit smoking.


Soon to be banned: Shisha

A ban on the import, distribution and sale of shisha will start later this month amid concerns about its adverse health effects. But existing importers and sellers of the tobacco can continue their business until July 31, 2016. Shisha smoking is viewed as more harmful than cigarettes.