The video for pop star Katy Perry‘s track Dark Horse has been edited to digitally remove the inclusion of a pendant with the word “Allah”, following protests that it was blasphemous.
More than 65,000 people signed a change.org petition stating that the clip, which showed a man wearing the pendant with the Arabic word for God on it being reduced to sand, was offensive. UK resident Shazad Iqbal said he launched the petition earlier this week so that “people from different walks of life, different religions and from different parts of the world, agree that the video promotes blasphemy.”
Today he said he was “thrilled” with the outcome. “The name of Allah has been removed from the Dark Horse video – we couldn’t have done it without everyone’s support so I thank each and every one of you deeply, our voices have been heard,” he wrote on Change.org.
“I feel that the impact we have made and the total number of signatures obtained does convey just how worthy a cause this is, it is a significant step towards the right direction.” The Dark Horse video has attracted more than 37 million views since it premiered on YouTube on 20th February.
It is as of yet unclear who gave the order for the change and Perry’s record company has yet to comment. YouTube’s own terms of service state that grounds for removal of content include copyright infringement and pornography, while any content considered to be a personal viewpoint, including blasphemy or hate speech, is permissible.
Perry has made headline regarding “culturally appropriative” missteps before, offending some viewers with her Asian-themed performance at the American Music Awards, where she performed her hit Unconditionally dressed as a Japanese geisha.
Perry recently announced a tour of Australia set for November.
Watch: Katy Perry ft Juicy J – Dark Horse