Thailand Takes First Legal Action Against Facebook, Twitter Over Content

Thailand launched authorized motion on Thursday in opposition to tech giants Fb and Twitter for ignoring requests to take down content material, in its first such transfer in opposition to main web companies.

The Ministry of Digital Economic system and Society filed authorized complaints with cybercrime police after the 2 social media firms missed deadlines to conform totally with court-issued takedown orders, the minister, Puttipong Punnakanta, stated.

No motion was sought in opposition to Alphabet’s Google as earlier indicated, as a result of its video platform YouTube eliminated the requested content material late on Wednesday, Puttipong stated.

“Except the businesses ship their representatives to barter, police can deliver felony circumstances in opposition to them,” Puttipong instructed reporters.

“But when they do, and acknowledge the wrongdoing, we are able to decide on fines.”

He didn’t disclose particulars of the content material or say what legal guidelines had been violated. The complaints have been in opposition to the US father or mother firms and never their Thai subsidiaries, Puttipong stated.

Cybercrime police at a information convention stated they would want to take a look at present legal guidelines to find out whether or not they had jurisdiction to take up circumstances in opposition to companies primarily based exterior of Thailand.

Emilie Pradichit, government director of Manushya Foundation, a digital freedom advocate, stated the complaints have been “a tactic to scare these firms.”

The ministry will file extra requests asking Fb, Twitter, and Google, to take away greater than 3,000 objects, a few of which embody criticism of the monarchy, Puttipong stated.

Twitter and Fb declined to remark. Google didn’t reply to a request for remark.

Thailand has a tricky lese majeste regulation prohibiting insulting the monarchy and a Laptop Crime Act that outlaws info that’s false or impacts nationwide safety has additionally been used to prosecute criticism of the royal household.

In recent times, authorities have filed courtroom orders with requests to social media platforms to limit or take away perceived royal insults.

The ministry has additionally filed separate cybercrime complaints in opposition to 5 individuals who it stated criticised the monarchy on Fb and Twitter throughout a serious anti-government demonstration on the weekend, Puttipong stated.

© Thomson Reuters 2020

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