Why was the SDP YouTube film disallowed? Why are there rules about party political films?
Because if we allow parties to make political advertisements (which the SDP YouTube clip was) we will end up like places like the U.S. where millions are spent on campaign advertising.
This is actually HARMFUL to democracy because as a result, in America, one needs tens of millions of dollars to launch a political career.
And not only that we may have an advert war where parties take out ads to criticise and sling mud on each other.
It was Lee Kuan Yew and the founding fathers who introduced these rules which have worked well. Let’s not deviate from them.
News from CNA
MDA reminds parties to not contravene Films Act ahead of General Election
Despite the reminder, the Media Development Authority says it will not take action against the Singapore Democratic Party for its “Pappy White” video, classified by the regulator as a political film.
- POSTED: 17 Aug 2015 23:06
- UPDATED: 17 Aug 2015 23:28
SINGAPORE: The Media Development Authority (MDA) on Monday (Aug 17) said it will not be taking action against the Opposition Singapore Democratic Party (SDP) for releasing a political film, which contravenes the Films Act.
The SDP uploaded two videos as part of its online campaign for the coming General Election. One focused on the local education system, suggesting that the system is stressful and has affected students’ well-being.
The other video is a tongue-in-cheek commercial featuring a made-up washing detergent brand called “Pappy White”. It shows a woman putting clothes printed with words like “transparency” and “democracy” into a washing machine. MDA has classified the video as a political film.
However, the authority said it will not be taking action against the SDP, noting that this is the first such incident. MDA added that parties may not have been fully aware of what is contained in the Films Act.
The authority reminded parties and candidates that they need to ensure that their political films do not contravene the Films Act. MDA also said it will not hesitate to enforce the law should they continue to publish such films.
The Films Act bans the making, import, distribution or screening of “party political films”. However, some films which meet certain criteria can be exempted. These include factual documentaries and manifestos of political parties produced by or on behalf of a political party.
“These laws ensure that political debate in Singapore is conducted in a responsible and dignified manner, and not by using the film medium to sensationalise serious issues in a biased or emotional manner. The laws thus uphold the seriousness of the election process,” said the agency.