Philippine CyberCrime Prevention Law: Kids Edition

Image from ViceGanda

The Cybercrime Prevention Law took effect yesterday and everyone is asking, what now?

First things first,  what is the Cybercrime Prevention Act of 2012?

The Cybercrime Prevention Act of 2012, which took effect October 3, 2012, criminalizes hacking, on-line trafficking, identity theft, spamming pornography and file-sharing (pirated movies etc).  All of which are undoubtedly illegal.   But also tucked in that act is the controversial act that criminalizes online libel.

According to the libel law portion, authored by Sen. Vicento Sotto,  anyone who publishes a post that is deemed "malicious" by anyone including government officials uhhmm like Sen. Sotto can be sued for libel.  The maximum penalty, if found guilty is P1 million and 12 years in jail!  People who hit the "like" button, re-tweet or share the post/picture, if proven to have conspired with the author of the libelous remarks, is also liable for suit.

What is libel?

According to Wikipedia,  libel is the communication of a statement that makes a claim, expressly stated or implied to be factual, that may give anyone a negative or inferior image. This can be also any disapproving statement made by one person about another, which is communicated or published.

How do they find out the source of the post?

The law allows authorities to collect data from personal user accounts on social media and listen in on voice/video applications, such as Skype, without a warrant. (GMA 7 Sept 29 '12)

People fear loss of freedom of speech.  How does Malacanang address that?

In defense,  Malacanang stated that “People are spreading fear of this law but they should also remember the power of the Constitution, the rights that it guarantees. That should be our safe harbor; that should be our refuge." (Inquirer Technology Oct 4 '12)

Should we stop liking rant posts, especially the ones attacking government officials?

For kids,  personally,  I would leave the war with the adults.  Let your moms and dads fight this out with the government.   Be nice to everyone, real and online:-)  You're too young to spend time in jail:-)

As for me, TheGoMom, I say,  I will carry on as before.  I will rant if I want to and I will like Epals more than ever!  (Epals is a series of photo posts on government officials whose faces "epally" turns everything into a campaign material).

I agree that too much freedom results in anarchy but this poorly crafted provision clearly curtails freedom of speech and I must say, laughter!  Blogger man may layang mag-sulat!

What is an Epal?


GMA News Network (various news)

Paul Tassi in

For more reads:

Main Points of the Law from WikiPilipinas

Digital Martial Law: 10 Scary Things About the Cybercrime Prevention Act of 2012/1

ABS-CBN: Angara Defends CyberCrime Law FB Comments on Cybercrime Law



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