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M.I.A. Banned From YouTube!

| Filed under: Music MinuteM.I.A.YouTube

M.I.A, Born Free from ROMAIN-GAVRAS on Vimeo.

Yesterday, we showed you M.I.A.'s disturbing, but thought provoking new video that had just hit the Internet.

We understand that for many, the footage is very hard to watch, but we were still somewhat surprised to learn today that YouTube has officially banned the video because of its graphic violence.

Give us five minutes and we could totally find dozens of videos that are worse than this. Besides, aren't their parental controls on this thing???


M.I.A. had posted on Twitter suggesting that her label bosses UMG were behind the ban, but later went back on to clarify that they weren't.

Don't want to piss off the label!

In case you missed it, here's the video again. (above)

Do U think it was right to ban it?

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225 comments to “M.I.A. Banned From YouTube!”

More comments: [1] 2 3 »

  1. 1

    No right considering the other videos.

    And what they want to censor is what she means… not "the graphic violence".

    Yeah, "free speech" my ass!

  2. 2

    Stupid, stupid video. Just another idiot director/artist trying to make a statement who failed to do so. We see enough violence on the evening news. BRING BACK JANET JACKSON'S 'RYTHEM NATION'. FUN…WITH A MESSAGE.

  3. 3

    You used the wrong "their" in the second sentence of the third paragraph.


  4. 4

    Would have been better with black people running instead of the redheads.

  5. 5

    Just another shitty song that has to rely on a gimmick to get anyone to talk about it.

  6. 6

    Ummmm yeahhh… I'm gonna go ahead and guess that it was banned because they freaking shoot a little dude in the head.. I'm just guessing though..

  7. 7

    youtube is just as lame as comedy central.

  8. 8

    I would guess the label didn't want anyone to see it because of it's ignorance. who wants more of THAT?

  9. 9

    I think the real problem here is the music, awful …. the video is another military video ….

  10. 10

    what an interesting video…

  11. 11

    they banned it cuz MIA makes USA looks like what it is…. A TOTAL SHIT

  12. 12

    It was a bit much….
    But they should just post it with a warning letting people know of the graphic content.

  13. 13

    Maybe. Youtube can do whatever they want, it ain't gonna lift the ban though. But for this video, it is a bit extreme.

  14. 14

    LOVE M.I.A. - it was a bit of a diferent then her last few videos but we need thought provoking artists and videos….. banning her will only make more poeple watch it….. youtube is becomng too corporate… I thought it was owned by google…cencorship is bad……M.I.A good… would love to work with her one day :) )

  15. 15

    I fail to see what is so "thought provoking" about this video. It's just another artist/direction using gratuitous violence and graphic scenes to garner attention. What's the point of it? Just more negativity being put out there in the world.

  16. 16


  17. 17

    It's a stupid video, and unnecessary. Not a good time to be making a video like this. It should be banned altogether.

  18. 18

    its quite violent but no need to ban from youtube. theres so many other stuff way more disturbing than this

  19. 19

    Was the only reason people were offended because it was white kids being shot and blown up and not black or middle eastern kids?

  20. 20

    isn't that just exactly what happened in the holocaust? i was not emotionally ready for that…

  21. 21

    Glad they banned it…everybody does everything for shock value these days -so over it.

  22. 22

    no wonder it was banned. imagine your child watching that. that video was very graphic. r u dumb? o wait u r. and fat and ugly.

  23. 23

    Pointless violence. Stupid video. Just another director or artist trying to shock us to make people talk about it, and here we are. There may be other violent videos out there, but that does not make it right.

  24. 24

    that was so messed up. why were they all redheads?? It seemed like she was provoking a ginger holocaust! What a horrible person! I am glad this video was banned. No one should see this!!!

  25. 25

    Romain Gavras did one just like this for Justice too, for their song "Stress". It got just as much flack

  26. 26

    I can assure you it was not UMG who banned the video. That was youtube.

  27. 27

    I think the only message of this video is that M.I.A really needed something terrible to distract from the

  28. 28

    That is absolutely disgusting, MIA, I really like your music, but that is completely effed up. Not to mentioned the fact that it taking the p**s of the holocaust, red heads and totally condoning violence. Ban it and then burn it.

  29. 29

    Sucks the vid was censored.

    The song is awful. Without the vid it'd be getting zero press.

  30. 30

    The problem with violence in the media is after it's in your face for awhile, whether it's (TV, movies, videogames and music videos) is that we all become a little more de-sensitized and nothing is shocking anymore. After 9/11, I find very little that shocks me anymore. This video had violence, sex, nudity, drugs, ethnic cleansing, etc.. etc.. Do we really need to see this all the time? While I believe in free speech, there should be a level of responsibility with it. While this isn't the most violent thing I have seen, i'm just tired of seeing it!!! People (young and old) have become more aggressive in nature over the past couple of decades and accept it as normality. Even the obnoxious behavior on reality shows is not shocking anymore, it really has to stop before people start acting more like wild animals rather then human beings.

  31. 31

    I think they chose to shoot such a violent video to try to distract from the AWFUL music.

  32. 32

    1. Is that even music?
    2. I feel like I was watching Apocalypto again.
    3. I've seen enough off this bull on the news. I don't want to watch it as entertainment too.
    4. The fact that M.I.A needs "shock-value" to get people to talk about her music is freakin' lame. Write some real music that delivers the message and you won't need a stupid video to go with it…

  33. 33

    Maybe the nudity? Maybe the language?

  34. 34

    Ugly song and disgusting video. Youtube as a private enterprise has the right to ban this and I'm glad they did. Not appropriate for kids!

  35. 35

    This director is a hack he/she not sure ripped off Sylvester Stallone in the movie Rambo. the whole running across the field scene that he filmed to show what was going on in Burma…..plus the song is terrible

  36. 36

    Definitely more thought provoking than Gaga's ego-stroke of a 3 hour waste of time, an amalgam of what seems to be Madonna's old acts, shock-tactics from the 80's, and Beyonce.

  37. dimtz says – reply to this


    not only is this the dumbest video ive ever seen, but the stupidest song, artist and director. what the hell are they trying to prove.

  38. 38

    Re: KLeeluvSgLee – r u stupid? the video is speaking against what you just said..she is letting us know how we are extremely fucken prejudistic, she used the "redhead" thing to explain how for the smallest worthless things we discriminate people…i thought it was a powerful video

  39. 39

    If i was swat I'd be pissed…of course even when i was in the military I got pissed seeing videos with military in them as if the director actually understood anything about the military…oh well…its a crappy song and she sucks so who cares

  40. 40

    The video was powerful..the song says most of it..born free…look past the sound and the kid getting shot if you want…understand the concept…she is talking about fucken prejudism we need to stop it…..sure the video may have been banned by youtube but youtube is letting the things she is talking about go by in videos..discrimination towards anything and everything…i have seen racist, homophobic, and discriminative videos and comments on youtube that just go by…..when we let shit like that go by we let exactly like what she was talking about in the video happen.

  41. 41

    absolutely should've been banned- fine ban other videos that are just as offensive too, but this one has got to go. It takes away from the music. If she wasn't trying to mask her music with this atrocious video then she might have an argument

  42. 42

    i think it was baned because they randomly started beating people trying to friend a ginger. and the guy doing herrion they passed by him like he was a wall. and shooting the gingers and blowing them up was kinda wrong. but you all know if it was in cartoon it would of been kinda funny.

  43. 43

    Ugh, it was well made but, whats the point??? they made look usa like shit but that's what they do in middle east… but WE KNOW… on the other hand… what the fuck youtube??? youtube have REAL footage of war and gang fights and stuff and ban this??? bitches please!

  44. 44

    I am completely baffled at reading some of these comments. Is the video violent? Yes. Do I think it condones violence? Hell no. Jesus, a lot of you people feel the need to trash something like this with no real basis for doing so. It seems that so many people these days complain and rail about things just because they have the (mostly anonymous) platform to do so. I don't think the song is good at all, but the video is well-made. In my opinion, the vid was probably banned bacause a) it's a public site that people of any age can watch, and b) because the squad rounding up all the gingers had American flags on their arms. Seriously… to all those who are in an outrage over this video… get a life! There are so many other things in the world that should command your attention than this forgettable video.

  45. 45

    I would hardly describe that as a music video. It didn't even seem like there was much music in it. It was really graphic. Plus what does MIA have against gingers? lol. It seems pretty random and really wierd.

  46. 46

    It's not gratuitous, it's reality. You look at it with different eyes when the victems are not what you expect but this goes on somewhere in the world every day. It's difficult to stop.

  47. 47

    Re: AprilB – I agree.

  48. 48

    PS… what the fuck do this have to do with the Holocaust? I know that it was a horrible slice of human history (hence the capital H), but it happened a long time ago, and most of the people responsible are long dead. In no way am I saying that we should forget about it, but there are so many other atrocities going on in the world right now that should be focused on instead.

  49. 49

    Stop giving this pretentious bitch publicity. The video is shallow and dull just like her.

  50. 50

    Huh.. I don't get it?
    Where's the music? That's my kind of hell, having to listen to THAT garbage!

  51. 51

    Re: jimena – thats such fucking bullshit. you see a ten year old boy get his brains blown out, get over your self-riteous liberal self.

  52. 52

    I'm disgusted in an artist that would even consider pulling a stunt like this! I will never listen to her music again or support her in any way because of this video. Good riddance to bad rubbish!

  53. 53

    This video was a piece of crap, not thought provoking. All the 'soldiers' had U.S. flags on their uniforms. Idiot bloggers will take that video, rip it apart and show clips of it and spread through the internet, like wildfire, U.S. soldiers are 'beating people to death' shooting at people running away. etc. etc. . Bloggers like YOU perez. and zombie types just believe without looking at the original. We are NOT DOING INTERNMENT CAMPS. YES, our sorry butts did them in WWII and we should be ashamed for that. We are going to ask ID for people we suspect of being ILLEGAL. Get it ILLEGAL. They are doing ILLEGAL things, They are not AMERICANS.

  54. 54

    MOST GANGS ARE MADE UP OF ILLEGAL ALIENS. They murder, bring drugs into the country and account for a large % of the prison population. It cost billions. If an ILLEGAL IMMIGRANT ends up in the hospital, they can't pay the bill, we the TAXPAYER PAYS. If an ILLEGAL IMMIGRANT gets into a car accident, do you think they have car insurance? Why do you think we have uninsured motorists on ins. policies? My husband just got a motorcycle policy. He paid $107 for the policy-$22 was for uninsured motorist-20% OF THE POLICY. Okay here come the arguments -some have ILLEGAL FORGED SSI CARDS AND PAY SSI, FED. AND STATE TAXES AND NEVER CLAIM THEM. Some say billions of dollars. again, THEY HAVE SOMEONE ELSE'S # AND THAT PERSON HAS TO SPEND ALOT OF TIME AND MONEY STRAIGHTENING OUT THEIR CREDIT REPORT. BEEN THERE.

  55. 55

    its a stupid video & i can understand why it was banned

  56. 56

    Re: Samson96 – i agree 100% sense i am a redhead

  57. 57

    Re: Debtee

    If M.I.A. see comments like this, she'll just consider it a victory. "The stupid massed do not understand my music video it's too deep for them."
    Stop saying shit like this and just call it what it is: pretentious pseudo-intellectual bullshit

  58. 58

    John McCain reported today, that last year, on the TUCSON BORDER, JUST THE TUCSON BORDER, 241,000 illegal immigrants WERE STOPPED FROM COMING INTO THIS COUNTRY. MILLIONS GOT IN. 1.3 MILLION POUNDS of marijuana were confiscated. on the Tucson border in 2009. This is not all of Arizona or all of the southern border, JUST THE CITY OF TUCSON. They have kidnappings, shootings, deaths. WHY WEREN'T THE NATIONAL GUARD DOWN THERE? I have nothing, absolutely nothing against anyone, no matter what country, what race or religion, as long as they are here LEGALLY and are PAYING TAXES AND OBEYING THE LAW. ILLEGAL IMMIGRANTS-WHAT DOESN'T EVERYONE GET?

  59. 59


  60. 60

    YES for the ban

  61. 61

    Anyone who's so ignorant as to view this video and then attempt to make the claim that M.I.A. is promoting a holocaust against redheads should stick to Justin Bieber and Miley Cyrus videos. Clearly, this video is not meant for you– you're already a lost cause, at least until you graduate from high school. For everyone else who's offended by the violence, well that's exactly the point; offensive, gratuitous violence– the very same which is perpetuated through countries' war mongering and genocidal policies. M.I.A made a video which is provocative and upsetting–WITH REASON. We can all appreciate Rhythm Nation's of this world, but sometimes we need a little reality check. If you're halfway educated or endowed with a semi-working system of logic, you would probably be able to understand this video for what it is. And you would be able to respect her message, regardless of whether or not you agree with her politics. You either agree with this kind of violence, or you don't. You should be able to understand the difference with being disgusted by images and being disgusted with the artist who has enough gall to enlighten you to them. M.I.A. is bringing humanitarian issues to the forefront of public discussion. It's obviously working. The message is in the video, which some people apparently aren’t evolved enough to comprehend. Stick to your Lindsay Lohan stories and you’ll be fine.

  62. 62


  63. 63


  64. 64

    I just watched halfway into this and it is pretty disturbing. There are fully frontal naked people who arent censored at all having sex. Seems like a decent reason to me.

  65. 65

    Not sure this video is even worth posting about. The"music" sucks and the video is worse. No use for it here.

  66. 66

    i feel sick. i see her point but its been done before and there is no sense of irony to it either. poorly done.

  67. 67

    Re: BritneyCobainWonderland – That's exactly what I was gonna say. Briliant. I agree.

  68. 68

    another "political statement" video that turned out utterly stupid. we get it, you hate our government. Making stupid videos like this doesn't make it better.

  69. 69

    Re: BritneyCobainWonderland – there is no message! there's an attempt, but its just another political driven biased video that proves nothing. music videos are supposed to be an expression of the artist. this is a mini-movie that has nothing to do with M.I.A.

  70. 70

    Re: BritneyCobainWonderland – Thank you so much…but 99% of the ignorant dumbass here dont see that..they are to absorbed thinking "NUDITY" ? oh no ill shield my eyes…they are thinking jesus why american flags? they are ignorant and dont see past their stupidity…a perfect example is the dumb fuck that said she is gonna say " people dont understand what i said" and that she is a pseudo intelectual Re: horsepuss – is just trying to shield her stupidity and lack of understanding by already calling herself stupid

  71. 71

    this video is amazing…and i am dead serious. it's incredible and i really found it interesting. something different :)

  72. 72

    Re: britbrit

    It you think that is representative of America, then you're too ignorant to respond to.

  73. Laury says – reply to this


    I understand she was trying to make a statement, and I respect her for that. But I still hated a video. I love M.I.A., but I hate the song and the video was just too painful to watch. A good video is something you want to watch over and over, I couldn't even make it to the end of Born Free. The video could've been thought-provoking without being so disturbing and graphic. There is such a thing as metaphors… I was excited for new M.I.A. material. Now… not so much.

  74. 74

    other than the kid blowing up its not any different than anything else you see in a movie. besides this is what happens in real life. maybe not in the US but in a lot of other countries this is normal.

  75. 75

    Horrid song, HORRIBLE VIDEO
    Yes it sends a strong message, but that is not what music videos are for…

  76. 76

    Re: kdlang – i dont see how this condones violence. just because there is violence in this video doesnt mean shes approving it.

  77. 77

    Yep shooting a kid in the head in a music video isn't gonna fly. I get why they banned it. The video is kinda lame anyway.

  78. 78

    Re: AvatarMarali – yes because your entertainment enjoying a catchy vibe is worth more then the millions of people that get treated unequally every day

  79. 79

    I've never heard anything by MIA - not something I would normally listen to, but it was a raw, gritty and cool background to this extremely thought-provoking video. Don't you people realize the purpose of using the poor ginge's in the video was to show how ridiculous our prejudices are? Violent, yes - but no more violent than what is actually going on every single day in different parts of the world to people because of ignorance and prejudice. WATCH IT AGAIN!

  80. 80

    of course it was banned,it has nudity in it perez…….nudity is not allowed on youtube..only on occasions,like where they are showing a medical procedure….but why were they all redheads………?????

  81. 81

    Please Perez, the world is full of effing sick people; the parental control in youtube is b.s.; everyone can enter…

    This video can be an "inspitation" to psycos….

    And above all… the music is awfullllllll

  82. 82

    What was the whole point of this dull video? Why not make a positive video instead? It was corny and CLICHE.

  83. 83

    Re: Starlitdaze


  84. 84

    Re: Samson96 – Samson96, are you a ginger?

  85. 85

    Im sorry, was there lyrics?

  86. 86


  87. 87


  88. 88

    I'm glad they banned it too. If they want to go ahead and sell this on itunes or on a dvd im okay with that. However there are people like children watching that freely on youtube and would disturb them easily. Even I was a bit disturbed :( . Ginger Genocide is not the way to go.

  89. 89

    Sorry I think I saw tits, that's a no no for youtube. Anyway, the video it trite. Justice's Stress video is much more accurate social commentary.

  90. 90

    Re: canadalady – YES

    still, i don't like seeing people get blown up :-/ even for artistic purposes

  91. 91

    I'm not one to usually comment but I felt deeply compelled upon viewing this video to emphasize what an emotional response the imagery and the music invoked in me personally. Especially as I am deeply concerned with the violence being perpetrated across the world by different groups upon one another. While I think that superficial entertainment has its escapist value, I have to say that this shows that artists like Gaga are not truly "groundbreaking" but instead commercial and rather narcisstic. Instead, this shows true talent…it won't be palatable to the average mainstream tastes. I notice several persons disliked the song itself, but I think for the purpose and message involved, the music and lyrics invoke that feeling of rebellion and self awareness that is central to this song. The imagery is powerful albeit excrutiating to look at. This is what is happening in our world…and the justification for it is usually something as silly as someone's appearance, religion or ethnicity. This speaks out against violence and discrimination in general and could not come at a better time!

  92. 92

    The video is f ***ing stupid and not entertaining at all i can see why it was banned red headed people are gonna freak

  93. LCFB says – reply to this


    i believe she got her point across. immediately every racist, homophobic, mysognistic person on this site equated to what it might feel like to be different. but i don't take comments on this site too serious.

  94. 94

    this m.ia i dont see her singing this just war shit.

  95. 95

    what was the point of this? this is disturbing? Boring and lame. Obviously you didn't see the finale for Spartacus Blood and Sand. Which was AWESOME!

  96. 96

    That video is only thought provoking to people who aren't used to thinking. This is just trite, self important nonsense.

  97. 97

    hmm, thought provoking? not really.. seen this stuff a million times. I get the point of the video, i really do. But yeah we get it, get over all the superficial shit and see the person, racism and being prejudiced is wrong, blah blah blah. we know. i never even heard one word of the song tho except the title born free… FAIL

  98. 98

    Wooooww…that's what you call ignorant people! In order to fully understand this video you need to think about the title (and outside the box if that's not asking too much). This video might be too violent for yuppies and suburbies living in LalaLand, but come now, this is America! and just because you didn't appreciate the song and the video doesn't mean it's garbage. Banning this video from Youtube due to "graphic violence" is plain hypocrisy. We're not in China! If you don't like it, don't watch it period.

  99. 99

    i normally do not comment on things like this but this needs to be said. this video is beyond disgusting and i fully support youtube for banning it. it combines war, hate, and racism through examples of the Holocaust and War. Something like this should be not be allowed to be viewed for young who do have acess to the internet despite parental controls this should NOT be allowed. I do not think it is thought provoking at all I think it is a disgrace and there was no point to be made

  100. 100

    I just watched it on youtube 2 seconds ago….so I'm guessing that it isn't "banned".

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