Cambodia bans social media sellers from using pictures of cultural relics to promote art


[INNEWS Comprehensive Report] The Cambodian Ministry of Culture and Arts recently issued an announcement prohibiting all sellers from using pictures of Cambodian cultural relics to promote art on social media.

The announcement noted that many vendors and online sellers are using images of Cambodian cultural relics obtained by the ministry as attractive images to promote their private art sales on Facebook and TikTok. Such behavior will seriously affect the recovery process of Cambodian cultural relics and lead to a loss of trust in the government, which has made significant efforts to recover Cambodian cultural treasures from abroad.

Additionally, the ministry urged art dealers and online sellers to immediately ban the use of images of national cultural relics and warned that necessary legal action will be taken against violators.

Sum Mab, spokesman for the Cambodian Ministry of Culture and Arts, said they discovered that traders in Siem Reap province were using images of original cultural relics posted by authorities on their social media pages to sell and promote fake cultural relics. In addition, Ly Huot, the General Secretariat of the National Maritime Safety Committee of Cambodia, submitted to the ministry a batch of cultural relics they found in a sunken ship between Takeo Island and Bamboo Island. At the same time, experts from the ministry will register the artifacts as national heritage at the Sihanoukville Department of Culture and Arts.

Buth Bopha, director of the Sihanoukville Provincial Department of Culture and Arts, said they must preserve these cultural relics so that the younger generation can understand the culture and works of their ancestors. “I appeal to all people, if you find any items suspected to be ancient cultural relics, please contact the local government or the Provincial Department of Culture,” he said.