KUALA LUMPUR: Bloggers are as liable for defamation as publishers in any other medium, but the difficulty arises when there are anonymous postings on blogs.
According to University of Ulster (UK) senior lecturer in Law Dr Venkat Iyer, it is the anonymity that creates a legal “grey area”.
Dr Iyer said it was wrong to assume that bloggers enjoyed greater privileges.
i wonder who assume bloggers enjoyed greater privileges? you? certainly not me. it would be stupid to assume that!
dr lyer was speaking to reporters after delivering a talk on “defamation in cyberspace” organised by the KL bar.
i suppose this seminar was timely when at this time we heard of nathaniel tan being detained under the official secret acts (OSA).
apparently this was the offending pos and comment that made the police detained nat. i thought of posting the comment, together with the anonymous website but i hold myself back. hey, that was what nat did and he got into trouble for that so i’d better not do it!
one must be very careful these days, you know, as susan loone had warned us. nat was the first blogger to be detained under OSA, you might be next, so watch out!!
on the same day, rocky too gave a warning:
The manner in which Nat was taken away was clearly meant to warn you, the so-called socio-political blogger, that you could be next.
whoa! scary thought eh? do i need to worry? well i guess not so much since i’m not a well-known or popular blogger. i remember once at the aliran round-table discussion, when i was talking to tony pua about this he was saying something like aiya don’t worry about that, we are very small fries, the government won’t know of our existence too. (at that time he was not the DAP economic adviser yet. now that he is, he IS a big fry!).
however, another blogger (not as popular as tony, status about same like me) told me that for sure the special branch will have a file on EVERY socio-political bloggers. and my dear friend, adam too once voiced his concern that he fear i might get into trouble one day! even my sister who knows nothing about blogger (and is not internet savvy) but knows i blog on socio-political matters cautioned me not to write too much about the government/politics as i might land myself in trouble!
whoaa!! i guess i should tread carefully…??
note: 1- learned from jeff ooi’s blog that lawyer malik imitiaz informed OSA is unconstitutional.
2 – like many others, i had put up the poster of ‘free nat’ done by mob1900 at my sidebar. please note that there is also an online petition to free nat (url also can be found there – sidebar, top of the poster).