Reporters Without Borders Germany have launched their new project, ‘The Uncensored Playlist‘, which aims to fight censorship by pairing musicians with journalists in countries with strict censorship laws.
Described as “a digital loophole to evade censorship,” ‘The Uncensored Playlist’ was launched on Monday, March 12th, which is also known as the World Day Against Cyber Censorship.
“Online press censorship is on the rise globally,” a press release for the project reads. “Meaning that in a large number of countries, people are unable to access many independent blogs and news sites, denying them their right to free information.”
“Five acclaimed independent journalists from five countries suffering from strict government censorship teamed up with Musical Director Lucas Mayer to turn 10 articles that had previously been censored into 10 uncensored pop songs,” it continues. “These songs were then uploaded onto freely available music streaming sites. Allowing these stories to be slipped back into the countries where they had once been forbidden.”
“For the very first time, reporters have become music artists to bring the truth to those that had once been denied it.”
Musicians from China, Egypt, Thailand, Uzbekistan, and Vietnam (countries which feature rather strict press censorship laws), have teamed up with local journalists to have their censored articles turned into lyrics, which were then recorded into songs, before being released digitally via Spotify, Apple Music, and Deezer.
As Pitchfork notes, all of the songs recorded for this project have been recorded in both English, and the language of the country in question. For the international release of these tracks, the songs have been credited properly to the journalists whose stories have been adapted, however in their original countries, the songs are credited to different aliases and feature different titles in hopes of protecting those involved from any form of retribution that may come from this defiance.