Indonesia Drafting Ministerial Regulation to Block Social Media

Indonesia Drafting Ministerial Regulation to Block Social Media

Indonesia’s Communications and Information Ministry (Kominfo) plans to draft a ministerial regulation (Permen) that will detail the steps the Ministry will take to block a digital platform. Director general Semuel Abrijani Pangerapan said in a virtual conference on Monday that the regulation is part of the government’s attempt to mitigate hoax related to COVID-19, which is said to have flooded social media platforms.

According to Pangerapan, Kominfo has identified more than 2,000 sources containing false information, of which 1,759 have been taken down. The government urged the platforms to closely monitor the content and collaborate with officials in battling hoax, including taking down what is deemed as problematic by the government. The authorities will need to provide solid evidence to back a possible takedown request.

“So prior to the blocking, there will be administrative sanctions, like fines, imposed on the platforms as a deterrent effect,” Pangerapan said. “To take down content, there must be legal evidence. The government can’t just demand for immediate removal without proof.”

Platforms that carry false information and refuse to comply with the takedown request could be subject to a ban. As the ministerial regulation is still in its early stage of conception, Pangerapan didn’t disclose further details.

Twitter declined to comment on this issue. Facebook didn’t respond immediately.

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