Disney Reportedly Implements Strict Censorship Effective Immediately

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Mickey Mouse holding a camera in anger from 'Mickey Mouse' season 1 episode 8, Panda-Monium

Credit: Disney Television Animation

Months before Mickey Mouse enters the public domain, Disney is reportedly implementing strict censorship measures that could affect thousands.

The Walt Disney Company is commonly known for creating beloved films that have enchanted viewers for generations and millions of magical memories at Disneyland Resort and Walt Disney World Resort. However, the company is also known for being fiercely protective of its brand and intellectual properties, going to great lengths to maintain a pristine imageeven when some products have sparked polemic for being “too inclusive.”

Mickey Mouse character meet and greet at Fantasyland in Disneyland Paris
Credit: Disney

With Disney losing the copyright for Mickey Mouse, Disney’s beloved icon, in 2024, the company seems to be gearing up to minimize its losses, allegedly introducing strict censorship across multiple platforms.

The Walt Disney Company is not shy when it comes to censoring, as even some of the most popular films released by the company, including Peter Pan, Aladdin, A Goofy Movie, Fantasia (1940), The Little Mermaid (1989), Who Framed Roger Rabbit (1988)
and other more recent projects like Falcon and the Winter Soldier (2021) have been modified on Disney+, the company’s streaming service, or have had an advisory message added before the movie plays.

Jasmine (L) and Genie (R) in 'Aladdin'
Credit: Disney

The latter was a bold decision motivated by The Walt Disney Company’s constant efforts to promote diversity, equity, and inclusion. In adding these advisories, the company states, “We can’t change the past, but we can acknowledge it, learn from it and move forward together to create a tomorrow that today can only dream of.”

The Walt Disney Company has added variations of the following advisory on content, products, and platforms owned and operated by the company: “This program includes negative depictions and/or mistreatment of people or cultures. These stereotypes were wrong then and are wrong now. Rather than remove this content, we want to acknowledge its harmful impact, learn from it and spark conversation to create a more inclusive future together. Disney is committed to creating stories with inspirational and aspirational themes that reflect the rich diversity of the human experience around the globe.”

Peter Pan with knife in mouth
Credit: Disney

However, it appears that Disney’s strict censorship is going beyond the company’s platforms, as a content creator has come forward, accusing The Walt Disney Company of censoring his content online, severely affecting his engagement on multiple social media platforms.

Hassan Khadair (@hassankhadair) recently posted a video saying, “After three years of doing Mickey content, ****** is shutting us down.” Khadair mentioned that he had to censor Disney’s name on his video, as the original version had been taken down for mentioning the company.

In his video, Hassan commented that he had been trying to create different kinds of content recently, taking a break from using the Mickey Mouse puppet that made him viral on TikTok for a long time. “I was really happy. I am really happy. But a little part of me wanted to go back to the thing that kicked it all off,” he added.

Mickey Mouse inside the Disney and Pixar Short Film Festival in EPCOT
Credit: Brittany DiCologero / Inside the Magic

Related: Mickey Mouse Aggressively Snaps at TikTokers, Defends Guest From Harassment

Hassah commented that he had received positive feedback from fans after resuming his Mickey Mouse impression videos — clearly aimed at a more mature audience — on TikTok and YouTube. However, after about ten of his videos went viral on YouTube, the creator added that the platform flagged his videos as “made for kids,” which severely impacted his views.

Khadair continued by saying that he appealed to this decision as quickly as possible, but his appeals were rejected almost immediately. “I reached out to somebody I know at YouTube, and they wouldn’t confirm anything for sure, but seems like a pretty significant company directly requested that they do this to me,” the creator added, referring to The Walt Disney Company. You can see the video below or click here to watch it.

The original post was taken down…so heres a censored version #bye #mickeymouse #mickey #disney

@hassankhadair

The original post was taken down…so heres a censored version #bye #mickeymouse #mickey #disney

♬ original sound – Hassan Khadair

Hassan’s statements are bold but not farfetched. However, this is not the first interaction between the creator and the House of Mouse. In 2021, Khadair posted a video in which he explained how The Walt Disney Company contacted him to inform him that he could continue making content — and even offered to start a formal business relationship with the creator — but would not be able to sell any merchandise with the company’s likeness.

A content creator recently had a similar experience for making inappropriate content involving Judy Hopps from Disney’s hit movie Zootopia. 

Nick Wilde and Judy Hopps, as portrayed at Walt Disney World.
Credit: Disney

However, in a recent follow-up video, Hassan explained that The Walt Disney Company had not formally sent him a cease and desist, adding, “Right now, it’s T-minus 84 days til ol’ Micholas the mouse is public domain.” Khadair mentioned that he will lean into posting Mickey Mouse videos “every single day for the remainder of this year” and asked viewers to recommend a company that makes plushes or stuffed animals, thinking of making “a tiny little version of the Mickey puppet to sell.”

Unfortunately for Hassan, Mickey Mouse won’t enter the public domain in 2024, or at least not the Mickey Mouse Disney is currently using as the company’s icon. Instead, the earliest version of Mickey Mouse, which first appeared in the 1928 landmark animated short Steamboat Willie, will be entering the public domain when the film’s copyright expires in 2024.

What do you think about Disney implementing these strict measures? How will Mickey Mouse entering the public domain affect the company? Share your opinion with Inside the Magic in the comments below!

Please note that the story outlined in this article is based on a personal Disney fan experience. No two fan experiences are alike, and this article does not necessarily align with Inside the Magic’s personal views on The Walt Disney Company.

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