45 arts groups reject MDA’s new licensing scheme

arts sg

ST photo

“Forty-five arts groups have backed a position paper by artists’ network Arts Engage, strongly objecting to the Media Development Authority’s (MDA) Arts Term Licensing Scheme.

The 12-page paper, which was released at 5pm on Friday, was signed by companies ranging from industry heavyweights such as the Singapore Dance Theatre and Singapore Repertory Theatre, to traditional arts companies such as the Chinese Theatre Circle.” -ST

We are not sharing the rest of the ST article because it is a wonderful spin of the new scheme by MDA that attempts to put it in such good light and make you wonder why the arts groups are opposing it: http://www.straitstimes.com/lifestyle/theatre-dance/story/forty-five-arts-groups-reject-mdas-arts-term-licensing-scheme-20140530.

We will attach TOC’s coverage of the content of the arts groups’ protest instead to give you a better picture of what is going on: http://www.theonlinecitizen.com/2014/05/position-paper-by-arts-groups-to-reject-mdas-new-arts-term-licensing-scheme/.

Basically:

“The arts groups argue in the position paper that the mechanics of the scheme run contrary to the spirit of co-regulation, self-classification and empowerment as the underlying principles of implementing such a scheme is in conflict with promoting an environment that fosters creativity. The arbitrary nature of classifying arts content, the penalties associated with misclassification, and the lack of clarity on the appeals process raises questions of fairness and transparency.

The position paper writes,

The current model of the MDA as gatekeeper and mediator between artists and disgruntled members of the public is deeply flawed. It sets up a false dichotomy of ‘artists versus community’, perpetuating the notion that society needs to be protected from its artists.”

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