All filming, even on social media, requires licence, says Saifuddin

  • Nation
  • Thursday, 23 Jul 2020

KUALA LUMPUR: All film production, whether from media outlets or personal media on traditional platforms or even social media, require a licence, says the Communications and Multimedia Ministry.

Its Minister Datuk Saifuddin Abdullah (pic) said it is compulsory for producers of these films to apply for a Film Production Licence and Film Shooting Certificate (SSP) regardless if they are from a mainstream media outlet or personal media.

He said the Ministry, through National Film Development Corporation (Finas), monitors film activities in its efforts to preserve and develop the film industry based on the Finas Act 1981.

"Finas issues three types of licences to the film industry, they are licences to produce, distribute and broadcast films or videos.

"Section 22 (1) of the Finas Act reads that no one can take part in any activities to produce, distribute or broadcast any film unless a licence is issued to the person," said Saifuddin in reply to Wong Shu Qi (PH-Kluang) during the Ministerial Question Time on Thursday (July 23).

Wong had asked the Ministry to state if it would be made compulsory for all those who film to apply for a Production Licence and SPP.

In her supplementary question, Wong had asked the Minister on the exact definition of film, and asked if this would affect people who use social media platforms such as Instagram TV or TikTok.

Saifuddin said Section 2 of the Finas Act reads that film includes feature films, short films, trailers, advertising “filmlets” and any recording on material of any kind, including videotapes and video discs of moving images, accompanied or unaccompanied by sound, and documentaries, for the viewing of the public.

He added that the government encourages everyone, individuals or organisations, to produce any form of film.

"However, it must be according to the law," he said.

In another supplementary question, Fahmi Fadzil (PH-Lembah Pantai) had asked if Dr Dustin Pfundheller who produced a documentary that was aired on Bernama TV, had any licence.

To this, Saifuddin said that he would leave the matter to the authorities.

"If there are complaints, we will take action according to the law and depending on the case," he said.

Fahmi pressed further and asked if there was a licence issued but Saifuddin did not respond.

Dr Pfundheller, a dental surgeon who travels the world, had produced a response video entitled "Top 15 Mistakes in Locked Up in Malaysia's Lockdown" on his YouTube channel and Facebook page called Other Side of the Truth.

In his video, he claimed international news agency Al Jazeera had made mistakes in its special report, “Locked Up in Malaysia's Lockdown”.

Earlier, Saifuddin said that according to the Finas Act, licence holders who want to film need to inform Finas at least seven days before starting the shooting, through a special form it issues.

The Al Jazeera report was not a separate film but a special report that featured on its regular “101 East” programme.

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