Singapore bloggers send 20-page proposal to minister

April 21, 2008
Singapore Democrats

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A group of Singaporean bloggers sent a 20-page proposal asking for Internet freedom to Mr Lee Boon Yang, Minister for Information, Communication and the Arts.

Entitled Proposals for Internet freedom in Singapore, the document expresses the bloggers’ concerns about Internet regulation in Singapore and makes suggestions for the Government’s review of such regulations.

21 April 2008

Dr Lee Boon Yang
Minister for Information, Communication and the Arts

Sir,

Proposals for Internet freedom in Singapore

The government has repeatedly acknowledged that Internet technology is constantly evolving and that regulation of the Internet must keep up with the times. Moreover, as a nation, there are vast benefits we can reap from our ability to use the technology effectively and creatively, and regulation should not be a dead hand foreclosing these opportunities. Heretofore, the government has promised and exercised a light touch, but it would be better if policy is based not merely on forbearance, but framed by more clearly articulated principles, in the interest of greater transparency and coherence.

As a group of active participants in Internet expression with a concern for media regulation, we submit for your kind consideration the enclosed proposals. They include both a general review of process rules, as well as content regulation, with special regard to (a) political expression, (b) hate speech and (c) sex and violence.

Each section bears its own list of signatories, and may list one or more among us who have dissented or abstained from the recommendation arrived at for that section.

We will be making this document public the day after we have submitted it to you, as we believe that the regulation of the Internet is a matter of public interest.

We are aware that these are issues of some legal complexity and do not pretend to have arrived at perfect solutions. However, we strongly believe that some of the key principles we’re advocating are important ones and hope that the government will take them on board in its ongoing review of regulations

Yours sincerely,

Choo Zheng Xi (theonlinecitizen.com)
Alex Au Waipang (yawningbread.org)
Gerald Giam (singaporepatriot.blogspot.com)
Roderick Chia (rodsjournal.wordpress.com)
Bernard Leong (bleongcw.typepad.com)
Ng E-Jay (www.sgpolitics.net)
Mohan Gopalan (magnezium.blogspot.com)
Scott Teng Kie Zin (small-friend.blogspot.com)
Cherian George (journalism.sg)
See Tong Ming (singaporerebel.blogspot.com)
Benjamin Cheah (leounheort.blogspot.com)
Ho Choon Hiong (hochoonhiong.blogspot.com)
Justin Zhuang

For the full set of proposals in pdf file, click here.