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John Oliver addresses Hotstar censoring his show; Questions for Disney

In an episode of Last Week Tonight that aired on HBO yesterday, comedian John Oliver addressed Hotstar's censorship of the show in India. Two weeks ago, the streaming service chose not to upload an episode of the show that focused on India's Prime Minister Narendra Modi. Hotstar has maintained a strict silence on the issue to customers and journalists, and despite requests for comment, we haven't heard from them. It is unclear if the episode, due tomorrow on Hotstar, will release in India. MediaNama has reached out to Hotstar for comment, but we're not expecting much here. "As best we can tell, Hotstar just decided to self-censor [our episode], which is still not good," Oliver said. He went on to cite other times when the service censored clips for making fun of Disney characters (Disney owns Hotstar), joking that the show would now be doubling down on such jokes. https://twitter.com/dpanjana/status/1236892782507089921 Questions for Disney Given that Hotstar isn't responding to requests for comments, we've written to Disney asking for responses to the following questions: Did Disney direct the censorship of the episodes in India? If not, was Disney US informed of Hotstar's intention to censor these episodes? Did Disney direct STAR to not release the Last Week Tonight episode on Prime Minister Modi? If not, did Hostar/STAR inform Disney of its decision to not release the episode? What are Disney's norms for censorship of criticism of Disney and Disney characters by its affiliated/subsidiary businesses? What are Disney's norms for not releasing shows/content…

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I cover the digital content ecosystem and telecom for MediaNama.

MediaNama’s mission is to help build a digital ecosystem which is open, fair, global and competitive.

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