An Iranian music streaming site censors albums of female artists; exposes bad photoshop

October 22nd, 2019

Inside a record store, you’ll find a wide selection of albums from artists of different genres. There’s Nicki Minaj’s fourth studio album Queen that reflects the provocative attitude of her music; Ariana Grande’s “thank u, next” cover art that features an upside-down Ari on pink background; and Shawn Mendes’ album art that appears to be a portrait of his face split with flowers.

Album covers, in general, are not just works of art but also a brand in itself. They create lasting impressions, they help communicate an artist’s personality, and most importantly, they significantly affect consumers’ purchase decisions.

But what would you feel if your favorite pop singers were removed from their album covers?

As a way of imposing censorship, the Iranian music platform Melovaz completely erased female singers like Taylor Swift, Lady Gaga, Lana del Rey, and Billie Eilish, just to name a few. Twitter user @IzzRaifHarz was first to realize the changes made on the website.

In the caption, he asked his followers to try searching their favorite singers and see how they were completely edited out of their own covers.

1. Taylor Swift

Screenshot via Time, Screenshot via Melovaz

2. Billie Eilish

Screenshot via Dancing Astronaut, Screenshot via Melovaz

3. Iggy Azalea

Screenshot via Genius, Screenshot via Melovaz

4. Miley Cyrus


Screenshot via Consequence of Sound, Screenshot via Melovaz


While women are missing from their own album covers, men are left unedited. 

Screenshot via Amazon, Screenshot via Melovaz

As reported by INSIDER, the country fully abides by the law of Islam that prohibits women from wearing tight or skin-baring outfits. It is also stated in the official website of The Islamic Supreme Council of America that, “Muslim citizens must adhere to Islamic law-Shariah. If a Muslim citizen commits a religious violation, he is judged according to Islamic law. A non-Muslim citizen is judged in religious issues by the laws of his own faith.”

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