News

Commercial Porn Distribution a Hard Swallow for Burmese Authorities

By The Irrawaddy 25 April 2017

RANGOON — Burmese police are investigating those involved in the local production of a pornographic movie, reportedly the first to be promoted and sold online in the country.

Art of Myanmar, the production group behind the two-hour commercially produced video, has promoted the film—entitled ‘Violet of Myanmar’—on their Facebook page. Shooting took place in December of last year.

The company has said that they aim to produce more genre-specific and hardcore porn films in the future.

On Monday morning, Art of Myanmar launched the video through a social media announcement: “We have now proudly launched Burma’s first ever [porn] HD,” while providing links for a two-minute trailer that shows performers’ faces digitally blurred.

The trailer then went viral on Facebook.

The announcement added that customers would be charged 5,000 kyats to gain access to the complete video. In order to view another film, entitled ‘Nurse,’ they were required to pay 10,000 kyats.

The trailer provides a bank account for the financial transaction, and encouraged customers to place orders from a Viber account that later crashed after it received more than 2,000 messages in 24 hours.

Quoting Burma’s President’s Office spokesperson U Zaw Htay, local media reported on Tuesday that the police had started investigating the people behind the production. An official from the Crime Investigation Department said that IT police are also following the case.

Article 292 of Burma’s Penal Code says that anyone who produces or possesses any “obscene” object shall be punished with a term of imprisonment of up to three months, and/or a fine.

Even though the porn industry has long been taboo in Burma, the country has seen short sex films distributed by voyeurs on social media, particularly since increased internet penetration accompanied the availability of cheap SIM cards after 2014.

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