Cartoon Network Africa Releases Statement In Regards Of Banned Shows In Kenya
This Thursday (22/06/2017), the Kenya Film Classification Board (KFCB) has banned several cartoons including content offered by Turner Southern Europe and Africa (Cartoon Network) and Viacom International Media Networks Southern Europe, Middle-East and Africa (Nickelodeon) including Cartoon Network’s Steven Universe, Clarence and Adventure Time and Nickelodeon’s The Loud House on the basis of “promoting” homosexuality. Turner has released a statement regarding the issue and has ensured viewers that programming is checked to make sure it’s suitable for children, culturally acceptable and always to complies to the laws of each country where the Cartoon Network Africa pan-feed is received.
Internationally, Turner uses market research to make sure its content is suitable for children in every country where Cartoon Network is received. Adventure Time was banned due to the past relationship between Princess Bubblegum and Marceline (as revealed by Adventure Time’s creator – Pendleton Ward to Marceline’s voice actress – Olivia Olson) and Steven Universe was banned mostly due to the relationship between Ruby and Sapphire and the past relationship with Pearl and Rose Quartz, which are ongoing storylines in the show, though all gems have a “female” appearance, they are technically genderless. Clarence was banned because of the relationship between Jeff’s parents.
The statement from Turner:
“With respect to the issues raised by customers, we ensure our channels and programming are suitable for children and do not contain the content and messages unsuitable. In Africa, as in all markets, we always seek to be respectful of local laws, cultures and sensitivities and, in some instances, this means we do show amended versions of US original series. We constantly review feedback from our audiences to ensure that this is the case and this is a responsibility that we take extremely seriously.”
Viacom responded by suspending the affected shows on Nickelodeon Africa and Nicktoons Africa: The Loud House, Hey Arnold! and the Legend of Korra, Multichoice (owners of DStv, one of the largest satellite pay-TV companies in Africa) has contacted Turner, Viacom and Disney to make sure they comply in the markets where DStv operates.