The New Law Was Passed 13-1
WHAT IS IT ABOUT?
“To us, this means we can no longer speak our minds and make our voices heard on the only platform accessible to us—the Internet. It means we can no longer “like” a comment deemed libelous, re-tweet a link of what could be construed as defamatory material, or even e-mail articles that some people may consider slanderous. All these are now counted as crimes…crimes that may cost us a jail term of six to 12 years. (Note that the law on cyber libel calls for a punishment “one-step higher” than ordinary libel, where jail terms could range from only six to 50 months.)
“In addition, one can be criminally liable even if the libelous material was written outside the Philippines. For as long as it affects a natural or judicial person who is in the country, that writer can be thrown into jail.
“So in one fell swoop, the government gagged the public from expressing its criticisms, discontent and outrage. It choked the free trade of ideas, which allows us all to fiscalize the truth on our own. It limits the flow of information to only what is force-fed to us by government. Even worse, it frees incompetent and corrupt politicians from public censure, which we often do through the Internet.
“In short, the Cybercrime Prevention Act holds a libel case over the head of every Filipino, preventing him from expressing what’s on his mind.”
Still don’t understand why many are opposing this new law?
“ . . We only ask that freedom be returned, we ask for nothing more but we will accept nothing less.” -Ninoy Aquino