BANGKOK — A popular cinema chain on Monday said it continues to show the Royal Anthem music video prior to each screening, contradicting a viral tweet claiming otherwise.
Twitter user @lmmablackbarbie wrote on Sunday that the Royal Anthem was not played at the SF Cinema branch inside Central Rama 9 shopping mall. The tweet has been shared nearly 80,000 times.
“SF didn’t show the Royal Anthem. Amazing, no one has to stand anymore,” the user wrote in a series of tweets. “I went to Central Rama 9. They really didn’t open it. I was thinking about how I didn’t want to stand, and in the end they didn’t screen it. I don’t know about other branches.”
SF วันนี้ไม่มีเพลงสรรเสริญพระบารมีแล้ว ทุกคนไม่ต้องยืนอีกต่อไป สุดมาก
— (@lmmablackbarbie) January 17, 2021
But a call center operator from SF Cinema said that the company has no such policy.
The operator said the Royal Anthem was screened after commercials and movie trailers, but before a soundcheck, so the Twitter user might have entered the cinema late and misunderstood that there was an omission.
Many theatergoers decline to stand up for the Royal Anthem in recent months as a show of support for the campaign to reform the monarchy – sometimes at risk of physical attacks from ultraroyalists inside the theaters.
Contrary to popular belief, refusal to stand for the Royal Anthem is no longer a punishable charge under any law – the offense was repealed in 2010, though some bystanders may still file complaints of royal defamation against the individuals.