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Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Daily Lessons from Life 19 June 2017 - New laws to deal with fake news...

"SINGAPORE: New laws to regulate Singapore’s online space and tackle the spread of fake news are expected to be introduced next year, said Law and Home Affairs Minister K Shanmugam on Monday (Jun 19).

Speaking at the start of a two-day forum on news credibility organised by the Straits Times and the World Association of Newspapers and News Publishers (WAN-IFRA), Mr Shanmugam said consultations with stakeholders such as media professionals on the legal framework will be held in the second half of this year.

"In some way, (the legislation has) got to achieve working with technological platforms to de-legitimise fake news, to help people identify what is fake news. And then where it is done with malice or for-profit, or deliberately spreading fake news, we have to find ways in which it is dealt with and the people who spread such fake news are also dealt with," said Mr Shanmugam.

The Government will also study the experiences of other countries in forming legislation on fake news, he added. One example he cited was the UK, where a parliamentary committee is looking into laws such as whether social networks should be held responsible for inappropriate content including fake news.

The minister shared the results of a government poll in May which showed that more than 90 per cent of Singaporeans supported stronger laws to remove or correct fake news."

Fake news must be stopped esp when it confused or delayed rescues during a terrorist attack. At the same time, the government must never use that new laws meant for malicious n profit oriented fake news against controversial n sensitive (excluding those relating to established OB of race/language/religion) topics like the currect sad LEEs' saga!!

Mainstream media must play their parts too when reporting on similar controversial but non-religious news n be mindful of being just another "echo chamber" of government's views!

Once government said something, it will get done. So, let's hope it is not, as feared by many civil groups n human rights activists that the new laws will be just to control freedom or responsible freedom of speeches!!

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