ศาสตร์เกษตรดินปุ๋ย : ขอบคุณแหล่งข้อมูล : หนังสือพิมพ์ The Nation
By Asina Pornwasin
MEDIA and legal experts have strongly opposed a proposed social media monitoring centre, which would require all users to register with their fingerprints and ID cards, saying it will lead to even more underground online content.
The response came after the National Reform Steering Assembly (NRSA) on Monday accepted a proposal requiring social media users to identify themselves and for the establishment of a “watch centre” to monitor netizens 24 hours a day.
The proposal included the establishment of a central social media watch centre, citing “inappropriate” use of social media. It also proposed that the Digital Economy and Society (DES) Ministry, the Interior Ministry and the National Broadcasting and Telecommunications Commission (NBTC) work with social networking websites, notably Facebook, to identify users.
Paiboon Amonpinyokeat, a legal expert and founder at P&P Law Firm, said that the proposal affects people’s freedom of expression on social media, since it also seeks to require users to register with their fingerprints and ID card numbers.
He said additional measures are not necessary because the NBTC has already enforced regulations on ownership of both monthly and prepaid SIM cards.
If the proposal is adopted, it will also hurt the country’s policy to promote the digital economy and Internet-related businesses, since more people will turn to apps that provide anonymity or use social media platforms hosted in foreign countries.
Any online content regulations should be enforced only on critical national security areas such as unrest in the country’s southernmost provinces, he said.
The government should consider giving incentives to Internet service providers for self-regulation, he said.
Prinya Hom-anek, the president and chief executive officer of ACIS Professional Center, is also against the proposal as he said it would encourage people to go underground or use avatars. The government should launch a public campaign for a higher level of digital literacy and encourage social sanctions against unethical social media users, he said.
The proposed monitoring centre will not work, he said, although he expressed support for the government to require Over the Top (OTT) broadcasters to register when providing their services in Thailand.
Mana Treelayapewat, dean at the School of Communication Arts, University of the Thai Chamber of Commerce, said there should be more public education campaigns on responsible social media use since content regulations are unlikely to be effective. In addition, he said the country’s image would be hurt if people’s freedom of expression is affected.
He said the proposal will also affect the “Thailand 4.0” modernisation policy as well as the path to promote a digital economy and society, noting that the proposal is probably aimed at politically sensitive content.
Meanwhile, the Thai Armed Forces have stepped up their preparedness for cyberwarfare amid growing global threats.
At a seminar yesterday on preparatory measures to cope with the rise of cyberwarfare, Maj-General Rit Indarawud, head of the Army’s cyberwarfare operations centre, said there are five levels of threats. The general said North Korea and Iran are among the most aggressive nations in terms of cyberwarfare. He said North Korea had previously used Thailand as a base to mount its attacks.