Fan Chunlin is a 30-year-old Shanghai citizen who just filed a lawsuit Wednesday demanding China’s State Administration of Press, Publication, Radio, Film and Television (SAPPRFT) to specify why gay content has been banned from tv and the internet.
Thankfully, Beijing’s No. 1 Intermediate People’s Court has accepted this case, will hold hearings, and will come to a decision within the next six months.
Fan’s lawsuit is a reaction to the policy placed last summer that banned gay content on the internet.
Fan’s case is asking that the Chinese government explain its legal backing and description of homosexuality as “abnormal.”
Yanzi Peng, founder of LGBTQ Rights Advocacy of China, expressed his support of Fan to the Hollywood Reporter.
“We expect to lose somehow, because this is a national government department [we are challenging],” he says. “But we still wanted to file the case because we have to show the position from our community and to tell society that we are not abnormal.”
He added: “This regulation is very important, because it’s not just one film or program. It’s a rule for all film and TV content on the internet. If this kind of regulation isn’t challenged, it means that discrimination against homosexuality is officially OK in China.”
Gay representation in entertainment media has been a taboo in China for some time now, but an increasing presence of it has caused the Chinese government to become increasingly hostile towards it.
China banned Michael Fassbender’s gay kiss in Alien: Covenant and completely shut down popular gay web series Addicted: The Web Series.
That said, the country has been slightly accepting of gay people on the internet such as their support of gay dating app Blued or their allowance of the “gay moment” in Beauty and the Beast.
We’ll see what happens with Fan Chunlin’s lawsuit and will keep you updated as it goes along.