China Bans 120 'Immoral' Songs From Internet

China released a blacklist of "immoral" songs on Monday which it has banned from the internet, as part of the government's nationwide crackdown on online content deemed to harm the "social morality" of the country, according to the official Xinhua News Agency.

The Ministry of Culture in China said the 120 songs "trumpeted obscenity, violence, crime or harmed social morality" according to a statement they released. It has ordered all websites to remove the songs from and said sites found which continue to post them would face "severe punishment."

Among the list of songs are five by Taiwanese singer Chang Csun Yuk, who is a household name in China. Yuk's music, which include lyrics such as "I don't like Chinese women" and "There are some people in the world who like farting while doing nothing", was said to contain "severely problematic content," according to a statement from the Ministry of Culture. The extensive list also includes work by local bands and popular musicians from Asia. Yinsaner, a popular hip-hop group based in Beijing, had a total of 17 songs banned. Other blacklisted songs include popular karaoke hits such as: Beijing Hooligans, I Don't Want to Go to School and Suicide Diary.

There has been a mixed reaction to the list in China, with people taking to social media to voice their opinions. "This is why Chinese hip-hop culture will never rise," wrote one user on the popular Chinese microblogging website Weiboa. Another sarcastically thanked the authorities for highlighting some potential new music for him to listen to. "I've never heard of the songs before," the user wrote adding "thanks for letting me know and I'll download them right away." However, some online users have praised the move. "Thumbs up! Such bad taste and vulgarity. You can tell just by looking at the names," one user wrote.

Authorities in China have been tightening their control over Internet content for the last few years, and have banned videos, images and games deemed immoral or inappropriate. Since 2003, the country's Internet filter, known as "the Great Firewall," has been been blocking unwanted foreign sites and online content deemed to "destroy social order; or provide sexually suggestive material or encourage gambling, violence, or murder." As a result, internet users in mainland China have no access sites such as Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.

In June the Chinese Ministry of Culture banned 38 Japanese anime cartoons deemed inappropriate from appearing online. The ban intended to "protect the healthy development of youth," according to Liu Qiang, an official at the Ministry of Culture.

The Ministry said that the list of banned songs would be updated "regularly updated".