August 17, 2007 / 7:55 AM / 10 years ago

Naked TV news stripped of subsidy

TOKYO (Reuters) - An embarrassed Japanese government has cut the subsidy, but a Tokyo TV company said on Friday it would carry on making a striptease news show with sign language for hearing-impaired viewers.

The government made grants totalling 400,000 yen (1,800 pounds) to help cover production of the weekly five-minute programme on satellite TV, which features a newsreader who removes her clothes between news items that she delivers in sign language.

The funding dried up when the government, under fire for supporting “Naked Sign Language News”, changed funding guidelines for programming aimed at the disabled to exclude pornography, local media reported.

“Of course we will continue making the programme,” said Shinichiro Fukuyama, a spokesman for makers Paradise Television. “We weren’t doing it for the subsidy, we just wanted to make something viewers would enjoy.”

Most people who had contacted the station about the programme were supportive, saying deaf people had the right to enjoy the same programmes as other people, he added.

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