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Jakarta Post

Reaffirming oligarchy in digital realm

  • Adek Media Roza

Sydney   /   Tue, November 12 2019   /  01:19 am

The new communications and information minister, Johnny G. Plate, has said that the government may restrict social media access in states of emergency and has cautioned netizens against circulating sensitive content. While acknowledging that this may violate freedom of speech, he said the government had no choice to limit the impact of materials that could harm the public.Public safety must be prioritized. However, what worries human rights activists is the unclear definition of emergency and public interest, which could further justify the state’s control of information to maintain power. As in the old days, criticism of state policies and officials may be considered sensitive. Instead of responding to this criticism with introspection and improvement, the government may simply restrict internet access. The government has already limited access to digital spaces at least twice this ye...