All must unite to combat online falsehoods
COMMENT | Last month, the Dewan Rakyat passed the bill to abolish the Anti-Fake News Act 2018. This cames after the bill was rejected by the Dewan Negara last year, which meant that the Act was still in force. With the Dewan Rakyat’s second attempt at repealing the Act, the Anti-Fake News Act will finally be removed from our statute books.
According to the Act, ‘fake news’ is any news, information, data and reports which are wholly or partly false, in any form which is capable of suggesting words or ideas. From the definition, ‘fake news’ includes information that is not confined to ‘news’ alone.
When the Anti-Fake News Act was passed, many have commented that it would create a culture of fear; a chilling effect on society. The wide definition given to ‘fake news’ and the imprecise nature of some of the provisions could lead to selective and arbitrary implementation and abuse...