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Published: Tuesday April 1, 2014 MYT 12:00:00 AM
Updated: Tuesday April 1, 2014 MYT 9:23:35 AM

Ban on Ashley Madison site stands

THE founder of extramarital dating portal Ashley Madison has not given up on trying to get the ban on the local edition of the website lifted – months after it was blocked by the authorities.

This even after the Media Development Authority (MDA) had earlier this month rebuffed the latest attempt by Canadian businessman Noel Biderman to negotiate a review of the ban.

His lawyers had sent a letter to the MDA on Feb 3 requesting a meeting, but the regulator replied on March 5, saying it intended to stand firm on its decision to block the site here.

An MDA spokesman said yesterday that the letter from Avid Life Media, which Biderman heads, “discloses no basis in fact or law to merit any review of MDA’s decision to block the Ashley Madison website”.

“As such, we have declined their offer to meet on the matter,” she added.

The Canada-based portal, known for its tagline “Life is short. Have an affair”, apparently has 24 million users across 36 territories, including Hong Kong and Japan, according to a boilerplate on the website.

It first stirred controversy here last October, when it was revealed that a Singapore edition of the website had been planned.

This spurred a protest on Facebook. The page “Block Ashley Madison – Singapore” was set up and gathered more than 14,000 “likes” in three days. It now has over 27,000 followers.

The MDA eventually announced that it would block the site on Nov 8. — The Straits Times/ Asia News Network

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