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Online ethnic minority comedies no laughing matter

Many Vietnamese YouTube channels have produced comedy videos portraying ethnic minority life through distorted facts and smutty jokes, causing community backlash.

Ngày đăng: 18 tháng 3, 2021
Cập nhật: 18 tháng 6, 2022
Lượt xem: 95947123
Nguồn: vnexpress

To attract more viewers, some Vietnamese YouTube channels have focused on comedies on ethnic minority groups, labeling them "foolish," "greedy," or "Luddites," etc.

One of the most famous channels is "A Hy TV" ("Hy" means female genitalia in Tay and Nung languages), has attracted more than 720,000 subscribers with dozens of videos featuring A Hy, a character from North Vietnam.Ah Hy is often depicted as lazy, naive, and harasses women with obvious jokes.

In the video "Anh Toc Di Buon Hoa Gap Co Chu De Tinh" (Ethnic Florists Meet the Easy Mistress), the main character gropes the woman's breasts, in an attempt to prolong the experience by talking obscenely.He also forced women to change clothes in public or use bras to cover their faces.

A Hy, the main character in "A Hy TV".Photo: A Hy TV."

Smutty conversations and arguments among ethnic minority families are also among the main topics on "LS Vlog".

"Muong Thanh TV" labels its videos "folk comedies" for portraying the supposed argumentative, dumb and sexually explicit daily lives of ethnic minorities.

According to the Institute for Social, Economic and Environmental Studies (ISEE), comedy videos are "unacceptable" This has had a devastating impact on ethnic minority communities.

"Laughter based on distorted facts and hurt is unacceptable and should not be encouraged, especially when ethnic minorities are already faced with large-scale negative prejudice" , ISEE stated on Facebook.

NS.Mai Thanh Son from the Institute of Anthropology under the Vietnam Academy of Social Sciences agrees.

He said: “Facing many prejudices makes ethnic minorities feel tired when interacting with outsiders.

Many minority community members agree that these types of videos cast them in a bad light.

Le Thanh Hieu, 26 years old, Tay ethnic group, from Cao Bang province, said he felt terrible when many netizens mistook these videos to reflect reality."They're just putting more bricks on the wall of prejudice."

Deep roots

According to experts, these comedy videos are driven by widespread, distorted awareness on ethnic culture.

A survey in seven provinces in 2013 found that 57% of respondents think that ethnic minorities are easily deceived, 63% think they are naive, 63% think they are backward and 80% think they are addicted. alcohol and advocate deforestation, according to Nguyen Cong Thao, also from the Institute of Anthropology.

Another survey by the organization indicated that ethnic minorities are often described as "backward", "lazy", "dependent". and "stupid", etc.Thao said these misconceptions are widespread on social media.

On April 17, the Ethnic Committee maintained several comedy videos on "A Hy TV" violates the country's constitution, which states "all peoples are equal, united and respect and help each other to develop together; All acts of ethnic discrimination and division are strictly prohibited."

The committee listed nine videos from the YouTube channel smearing minority groups and causing a distorted understanding of Vietnamese in general.

A few days after the committee called on the Ministry of Information and Communications to resolve the issue, the channel removed all of its videos and changed its name to "A Huy TV".However, many videos have been spread to other channels and platforms.

As of June 2, no penalties or warnings have been issued.Meanwhile, Son from the Institute of Anthropology told local media that these channels could be penalized under the new cybersecurity law.

However, comedies on the video streaming platform have confused the authorities when it comes to fines.Mr. Vi Kien Thanh, Director of the Vietnam Cinema Department, said that these short films are not under their management, so they cannot be warned or sanctioned.

“On the issue of sanctions, there should be coordination between the Ministry of Information and Communications and the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism."

Many channels have turned off commenting functions or deleted controversial content to avoid public backlash.Hieu remembers a few weeks ago, a friend of his asked his family if they had seen some of these videos on YouTube.

"We watched a video, then I told them to stop, because videos can hurt, no matter how funny they are."


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