West Java cracks down on 'adult' foreign pop including Ed Sheeran's Shape Of You

Ed Sheeran's Shape of You is one of 85 songs labelled "adult" that can be aired only between 10pm and 3am.
Ed Sheeran's Shape of You is one of 85 songs labelled "adult" that can be aired only between 10pm and 3am.PHOTO: SCREENGRAB FROM YOUTUBE

JAKARTA (REUTERS) - Indonesia's most populous province has set restrictions on when certain English-language songs can be aired on television and radio, citing concerns over "vulgar" and "negative" lyrics.

The West Java provincial broadcast commission identified 85 songs labelled "adult" that can be aired only between 10pm and 3am. These include Ed Sheeran's Shape Of You, Bruno Mars' That's What I Like and Ariana Grande's Love Me Harder.

The world's biggest Muslim-majority country has seen a rise in restrictions on content or behaviour deemed pornographic, sometimes through local by-laws based on syariah in the officially secular country.

"Broadcast programmes are prohibited from containing songs and/or video clips that display or contain obscenities, sex... and drugs," Ms Neneng Athiatul Faiziyah, a member of the commission, said on Tuesday.

She said the action followed complaints from the public, and there were similar objections over thousands of songs.

Ms Faiziyah said the broadcast commission was also drawing up a list of Indonesian language songs considered "adult".

West Java is home to 48 million people and is known for being among the most conservative provinces in Indonesia.

At the national level, Indonesia already has strict anti-pornography laws that critics say can be misused to threaten tolerance or creative expression in the South-east Asian country.

Indonesia's Parliament dropped a draft music Bill last month after protests by artists and rights activists who were concerned that it could restrict freedom of expression.

The Bill included articles that aimed to prevent the creation of music deemed to bring in negative influences from foreign cultures or that could incite the public to acts of violence or to break the law, the Jakarta Post newspaper said.