Philippine Republic Act 10175: A slippery slope and betrayal of public trust

A brand new cyber-crime law, Republic Act (RA) 10175, goes into effect on October 3, 2012; and Filipinos on the web, particularly in the Philippines, are up in arms, and justifiably so. To read the actual language of RA 10175, go to http://www.gov.ph/2012/09/12/republic-act-no-10175/

If you are just learning about RA 10175, below are the key issues, including some of the contested sections.

Sections 4 (c) [4], 6, 7, 12, and 19: are believed to violate the Constitution for allowing people to be sued if they republish libelous content online via retweets on Twitter or sharing on Facebook.

Section 7: allows a person to be sued twice for the same offense, which violates the Constitutional right against double jeopardy. Under the new law, people can be be sued for old Internet posts.

Section 12: authorizes law enforcement authorities to “collect or record by technical or electronic means” communications transmitted through a computer system, enabling law enforcement authorities to “eavesdrop, monitor and record the communication and correspondence of any citizen” without a court order. Petitioners argue that this violates existing prohibitions on wiretapping telephone conversations without the benefit of a court order.

Section 20: authorizes the criminal prosecution of persons who do not comply with “any order of the NBI and PNP issued pursuant to Section 12 “with imprisonment of prison correctional in its maximum period or a fine of One hundred thousand pesos (Php100,000.00) or both, for each and every noncompliance.” Petitioners argue that this disqualifies anybody convicted of the crime from applying for parole.

Follow our Facebook page, named “100 Million Reasons” and post your comments, share your thoughts, and join the fight.

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