Philippines Plus will be Minus
I was doing one of my main posts and when I went to make a link to the Philippine Plus website, I made a discouraging discovery. The author of the site, Dave, is really concerned about this new Cybercrime law. He is so concerned that he is going to be posting much, much less from now on. He is even thinking about closing his site down altogether. That would be a shame because he has some wonderful posts. That potential 12 year prison term has gotten a lot of people rattled. I personally have not seen anything on his site that I would consider bad enough to be put in jail for, but what do I know. I’m not the government and even if Dave did direct anything towards me, I know it is all in fun and I can take a joke.
Maybe I don’t know enough about the new RA 10175, but I plan to continue my website because I, to the best of my knowledge, have not said anything that is not true. I think the worst thing that I have had on there was my complaining about the electrical power, the Internet and the corruption within the government. Maybe the corruption thing is pushing it, but I know that many officials in the Philippine government know that there is corruption within the government and they are trying to eliminate it. As in most things in the world, there are always a few bad apples that make the barrel rotten. If you can get rid of the rotten apples and fill the barrel with all good apples, then most everyone is happy. Although it is probably impossible to please everyone, pleasing the majority should always be the goal of any government. Also the media likes to print the bad stuff more than the good stuff. So the people read a lot more bad things than good things and think that things are not going well. I guess the Philippines is not that different than the United States in that regard. Of course the average citizen probably does not know the in’s and out’s of being a member of the government, so they can only go by what they read, see and hear.
Now I for sure do not want to go to jail for 12 years, especially here in the Philippines, but I think I will continue on and just be honest, as I always am. I don’t call people names or bad mouth people and if I ever receive a comment that does so, I either delete it (I have only had to delete one) or reword it. I will say though that I am a bit nervous about continuing, but, as I said, I think I’m fair and impartial for the most part. You won’t find any racial, sexual or politically directed pictures or statements on my site. I love the Filipino people and I have not met one that I have had many bad things to say about. Oh I know there are some out there, but I have not met them and I hope I never do.
I hope that the amendments being sought go through and the people with the power to change the law will do so. I am so glad that a Cybercrime Law has been passed because people have been getting away with all kinds of Internet crimes without the proper punishment. Just speaking your mind (not slander) should not be a crime in a free country or actually not in any country. The people of a country are suppose to be the real power, but that might be starting to disappear in some countries. I think people have a right to complain, within reason, about their government if there is a problem, or even if they ‘think’ there is a problem.
I’m going to miss a lot of Dave’s witty humor so I’m hoping the amendments go through and things ease up enough for him to continue with his blog. Dave if you are reading this, you are welcomed to send stories my way and I will print them, if you want. I guess that would be about the same thing though, huh? Maybe so, but you are still welcomed to if you want to. Government officials if you are reading this, no one in this household, including me, thinks that the government is terrible. I do believe that there are still some corrupt officials in all levels of government, but I know that you know that too. I also know that there have been investigations into those corrupt officials and some have been convicted. That’s good. Keep up the good work, but please do not restrict the freedom of the people for the actions of a few.
I personally would like for the Philippines to someday become what is considered a first world country, but without sacrificing the rights of the people to do it. I obviously love it here because I have chosen to live here. I hope that nothing I have typed tonight or have ever typed will jeopardize that freedom of choice I have. I never intend to harm anyone physically or verbally, not even my wife when she is in a bad mood.
11 thoughts on “Philippines Plus will be Minus”
The thing that many people don’t understand is that the libel laws in the Philippines are not the same as the libel laws in the States. Here, the truth is not a defense against libel. Even if what you post is 100% true, you can still be convicted, if the statement is hurtful to the other party.
For instance, several years ago, a person made a statement that former First Gentleman, Mike Arroyo, was fat. Arroyo filed libel charges against him for that. Even if Arroyo is overweight, that is still libel. So, saying that a government agency is corrupt, even if it is widely believed that it is corrupt… that is still libel. You can now go to jail for 12 years for saying that, even if what you said is true.
In fact, UJ, if I go on your blog and make a statement, the fact that you are hosting that statement on your site can send YOU to jail for what I said.
It’s just a bit on the silly side then, isn’t it? You have so many blogs Bob, how are you going to handle all of that? I suppose that means that if I want to continue to live in the country and not get booted or put in jail, then I probably should restrict my posts too. I mean restrict as in not print anything about the government and no rumors or hearsay, whether I mention it is only a rumor or hearsay or not. It’s a shame that things like this happen. I hope it doesn’t develop into something worse or I may also just give up on this site also. I guess I could always go with only just place, location, phone # and price input, but that would be boring. There is not a lot of information on the net about this area though, so that would probably be my fall back in case things do get out of hand.
Thanks Bob for the clarification. I’ll be even more careful from here on out and hope that will be good enough.
It is a huge concern for me. In many ways, I don’t know what to do. I think that Dave’s move about shutting down comments is probably a wise move, but it is something that I don’t want to do. If I were smart, I would probably do it myself, but I also feel that it would kill my site, so I want to avoid that.
That is part of the reason I don’t want to change anything also. I think my site is finally ready to move up in the blog world and then something like this happens. I’m going to leave things as is and just be extra careful I guess. I will have to monitor the comments, but I only have this one site, not multiple ones like you do. I sure hope that things work out for you and this thing does not interrupt your livelihood.
Well here is a good start to the solution: http://technology.inquirer.net/18578/netizens-rejoice-after-sc-issued-tro-vs-cyberlaw#.UHPWjjxvZSU.facebook
I think that new law was originally intended to keep people from posting things that were untrue or inflammatory and as such is well intentioned. The way it is written needs to be examined closely in order to keep people from filing frivolous claims against websites and website owners just because someone may post a statement they object to. Keep posting true statements and keep away from rumor or hearsay and I don’t see how you can really have any problems. If you anger or inadvertantly insult someone though I’m not so sure anyone would be safe the way the law is written now.
That is what I understand from the law too Mark. But the vague writing seems to have a lot of people in an uproar. The few little clips I have read from the law really do need to be clarified or there just may be a lot of claims that will tie up a justice system that is already strained. Maybe that is why Dave has opted to be cautious. He doesn’t want to inadvertently insult someone and end up in court or worse, jail. I don’t believe in rumors or hearsay and if I ever put anything like that in my posts, I will specify that it is a rumor or hearsay. I don’t believe things unless I see or hear it for myself. It’s like UFOs. They might exist, but I won’t believe it until I see one for myself.
I wish I could say the same as Rick but I have had a few things happened to me by govt. people and private as well, but same has happened to me here in the USA. That hasn’t change my mind on the PH, I still love it there. But with this law they’re creating more govt rules, most are complaining about the regs here in USA and Canada.
I don’t think this is intended for sites like yours or Dave’s.
I guess I’m pretty lucky in some ways, because people or government agencies don’t usually bother me. I guess I keep a low profile and I don’t ask for much in life. All I want is to be pretty much left alone, not cheated out of what I earned and to have enough money to travel to different places around the globe, without straining my wallet. I don’t think that is too much to ask for. I don’t see why it would affect our sites either, but I guess Dave is opting to be more cautious. I can’t blame him really, it makes me nervous.
I agree John, 2 years in the PH and not one bad thing said or done to me by Filipinos. I can’t say the same about some Kano that used my help b4 I moved here. He got a lot help from me in getting his fiance to USA and then steals from me by not paying a debt, over 3 years old now.
I remember you told me about him Rick. From the whole story you told me, I sure wouldn’t want that guy to be a friend or even an associate of mine. This is the same guy that you said cheaped out on his on wedding reception, right? Or have you had more than one bad experience with Kanos?
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