A Hong Kong magazine criticised for publishing secretly shot photographs of a semi-naked pop star has lost its appeal against a court's findings that the article was obscene. The Obscene Articles Tribunal Wednesday upheld a previous classification that the photographs of singer Gillian Chung -- one half of the popular duo Twins -- published in an August edition of Easy Finder
magazine were indeed obscene.
The grainy pictures, taken while Chung was changing costumes backstage during a concert in Malaysia, showed her bare back and a hint of bra strap.
The article was referred to the tribunal after Hong Kong's media watchdog received a record number of complaints about the pictures.
In Wednesday's appeal, a panel of one magistrate and four lay members, upheld the judgement, saying that the article was a "calculated act of selling sexuality which is corrupting and revolting".
Chung has said she will sue the magazine, published by Next Media, which also publishes the city's biggest selling newspaper, the racy tabloid Apple Daily.
The case sparked a furious backlash from celebrities who complained that the city's ravenous press had often overstepped the line of decency. They called for the government to introduce curbs on the paparazzi and tabloids.
Hong Kong's highly competitive mass media are notorious for their pursuit of sensational scoops and have often been accused of invading individuals' privacy in the process.
In 2002, action star Jackie Chan launched a protest against Three Weekly magazine after it published naked pictures of pop star and actress Carina Lau allegedly taken when she had been kidnapped by triads.
(Agencies via CRI November 2, 2006)