Well the (Victoria’s) Secret is out: Katy Perry and some Victoria Secret models are banned from China indefinitely — which means that the upcoming Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show in Shanghai is going to have to come up with some new materials.
The reason behind Katy Perry’s ban was because the Chinese government were told about a not so secret performance which Perry hosted in Taipei, Taiwan. During this performance, Katy wore a dress with sunflowers and waved the Taiwanese flag to show support for the small country who has been vying for a long time it’s independence from China. Sunflowers are metaphorical imagery that the anti-China Taiwanese citizens have incorporated into their protests.
A source summarized the banning as such: “She was initially granted a visa to perform at the VS show in Shanghai, then Chinese officials changed their minds and yanked her visa. For every artist who wants to perform in China, officials comb through their social-media and press reports to see if they have done anything deemed to be offensive to the country. Maroon 5 was banned a few years ago because one band member wished the Dalai Lama happy birthday on Twitter.”
This is a blow for Katy Perry, who no doubt would have used her television appearance to promote her newest album Witness, for a minimum of six million US citizens, plus an additional million(s) world-wide. Witness debuted at #1 on the Billboard 200 to negative reviews. She’s currently planning on rolling out the fifth single from the album, “Hey Hey Hey” this December.
Other models were banned mainly due to social media posts, raising the question again about the public/private dichotomy that most people are still catching up.
Gigi Hadid was banned due to an Instagram video this past February in where she held up a biscuit which had been baked to look like Buddha and mocked the biscuit by squinting her eyes. The controversy back in February came with a heavy hand of criticism, and it’s no secret that Chinese social media users deemed Gigi Hadid racist.
Other models banned include Julia Belyakova, Kate Grigorieva and Irina Sharipova among additional emerging models.