YouTube [iQiyi Thailand]

Chinese streaming service iQiyi removed ten LGBTQ+ television shows from its Singapore servers on 20 September.

The shows were said to be removed as part of a media guideline compliance review.

A spokesperson for the streaming service said the deletion of the programmes is short-term.

“The content was temporarily removed in compliance with the Infocomm Media Development Authority’s guidance towards R21 content,” they explained to Variety.

R21 shows are restricted to viewers who are over the age of 21.

Earlier this year, Disney’s animated Pixar film Lightyear was approved for those 16 year old and above to watch.

iQiyi is one of the largest streaming platforms globally.

It has nearly 500,000,000 active monthly users and an estimated 6,000,000,000 hours spent on its service.

In Singapore, it blocked shows such as KinnPorsche and Until We Meet Again.

Both are part of the rapidly-growing Boys Love genre, known as BL.

BL is widely popular across south-east Asia.

iQiyi noted that it will continue to implement stricter rules on what’s available to watch.

For some titles, a PIN code will be required to access the content.

The government in Singapore vowed to regulate LGBTQ+ media in August.

The decision was part of a so-called effort to “protect younger audiences” whilst allowing adults make “informed choices.”

Legislation in the region already forbids the “promotion of homosexuality,” in the media.

The crackdown has happened as the country has moved to decriminalise gay sex.