After liking a tweet from South Park this week, Zedd claimed he had been banned from the People’s Republic of China. The seemingly innocuous interaction which landed the “Clarity” producer in hot water had such a profound impact that fans were left skeptical.
In a follow-up statement on his own Instagram post, Zedd (real name Anton Zaslavski) clarified, “…this is NOT a joke. The government informed our promoters that if they don’t cancel my scheduled shows in China, they would pull their cultural permits.” CNBC has also verified the claim with Zedd’s publicist.
South Park was recently banned in China after the show’s recent episode “Band In China” made light of American companies and Hollywood conforming to the demands of Chinese censors.
The political issue recently was spotlighted when Daryl Morey, general manager of the Houston Rockets, tweeted in support of Hong Kong’s protestors. That tweet has since been deleted, but the fallout was acute. Houston Rockets merchandise has disappeared from Chinese storefronts and e-commerce retailers, Houston Rockets games will no longer be televised in China, and the team’s former star Yao Ming – now President of the Chinese Basketball Association – has cut ties with the team.
At the time of writing, Zaslavski’s music still reportedly remains available on Chinese streaming platforms, but that could change depending on the severity of his ban. It is unclear as to whether the implications of his online interaction have been fully realized.