This case really, really bothers me. The story, as I understand, is this: one of the most famous Indonesian pop singers, Ariel, of the band Peterpan, was arrested last year on the basis of the new Indonesian anti-pornography law. He had a habit of sleeping with plenty of women and recording these activities on tape for private use. One of his “friends” found some videos on his phone and decided to distribute them on the internet. They spread like an epidemic and some estimates have it that more than half of Indonesia’s huge population has seen them. Ariel was arrested and now faces five years in jail.

Whatever you think of recording your sexual activities on tape, I cannot see any justification for putting someone like this in jail, since he never intended to distribute any of those tapes. I cannot see any good moral justification to disallow distribution in the first place, but at least you could argue that’s the law. Also, his recording activities took place in 2006, two years before the new law became active – only the distribution happened later.

His music career is, for now, destroyed – other Indonesian bands are taking over the top of the national charts. I just discovered his music this Christmas and really enjoy it. Really sad it has to end like this … Now I just hope the courts will see the lack of sense in this and find him not guilty.

2 Responses to “pornography in Indonesia”

  1. Marol Says:

    In Poland making images of naked person or person in sexual act using violence, threat or deceit is forbidden (up to 5 years in prison) as well as distributing such images without permission of person on that image. This law appeared about 1 year ago.

  2. jos Says:

    As I understand, the Indonesia case is not about any of those three cases, but I am not actually 100% sure. If there is deceit involved, the case becomes a bit different, of course. There is definitely a case of distribution without approval, but that’s done by his friends, not by him. But I don’t know whether his “victims” were aware of being taped and if not, I guess that would count as deceit.

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