Thursday 19 July 2018

Eurovision terminates contract with Chinese broadcaster after failure to broadcast 'gay' Irish performance

Independent.ie highlighted the issue internationally today

Alan McGrath and Kevin O'Dwyer Photo: Andres Poveda
Alan McGrath and Kevin O'Dwyer Photo: Andres Poveda
Brian O'Reilly

Brian O'Reilly

The EBU (European Broadcasting Union) has tonight announced it has terminated its contract with the Chinese broadcaster Mango TV after it failed to broadcast Ireland's Eurovision entry.

On Tuesday the Chinese broadcaster, part of the second biggest channel in the country, edited out the Irish Eurovision entry over its depiction of a gay relationship.

Ryan O'Shaughnessy performed 'Together', qualifying Ireland for the final for the first time in five years.

Ireland's Eurovision entry has made headlines as the first in the contest's 63 year history to feature a same-sex couple.

China has strict broadcast rules banning any depiction of gay relationships.

Independent.ie brought the ban to international attention this morning, and after a review the EBU decided to terminate the contact with the Chinese broadcaster.

In a statement tonight, the EBU said: "On the 9th of May, Chinese broadcaster Mango TV broadcast the first Semi-Final of the 2018 Eurovision Song Contest live but two performances were censored.

"This is not in line with the EBU's values of universality and inclusivity and our proud tradition of celebrating diversity through music.

"It is with regret that we will therefore immediately be terminating our partnership with the broadcaster and they will not be permitted to broadcast the second Semi-Final or the Grand Final."

Ryan O'Shaughnessy has welcomed the EBU decision.

During the live semi-final on BBC Four, host Rylan Clark-Neal said Mango TV would not be allowed to show Eurovision and O'Shaughnessy said: "I would like to welcome the decision by the EBU to do that because from the very start we have just said love is love.

"It doesn't matter whether it's between two guys and two girls or a guy and a girl.

"I think it's a really important decision by the EBU, they haven't taken it lightly, and I think it's a move in the right direction I'm happy about it."

Clark-Neal added: "This is Eurovision, it's inclusive of every single person."

Online Editors

Entertainment Newsletter

Going out? Staying in? From great gigs to film reviews and listings, entertainment has you covered.

Editors Choice

Also in Entertainment