- Posted October 2, 2012 by
Quezon City, Philippines
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Cybercrime Prevention Act of 2012: A Threat to Democracy?
October 3rd marks the enactment of RA. 10175 also known as the Cybercrime Prevention Act of of 2012.
Although it primarily declares that “The State recognizes the vital role of information and communications industries such as content production, telecommunications, broadcasting electronic commerce, and data processing, in the nation’s overall social and economic development”, local netizens are protesting against what they deem as unfair legislation because other than the usual cyber crimes which include hacking, identity theft, and spamming, it also has provisions on pornography, file sharing, and worst of all, libel, which threatens freedom of expression, freedom of communication, and the privacy of communication online, ergo, earning the moniker “Cyber Martial Law.”
“If you click ‘like,’ you can be sued, and if you share, you can also be sued,” said Sen. Teofisto Guingona III, one of the lawmakers who voted against the passage of the law.
“Even Mark Zuckerberg can be charged with cyber-libel,” the senator said.
The provision, according to Guingona, is so broad and vague that it’s not even clear who should be liable for a given statement online. And if you’re found guilty, get ready to spend up to 12 years in prison." (CBS)
In this modern day and age where the internet has become a potent tool of exchange of information and communication, the passage of a law against freely expressing one's thoughts online through various media has also become a possible tool of oppression.
What do you think about the passage of the Cybercrime Prevention Act of of 2012 in the Philippines? Is it a serious threat to democracy?