What a crazy idea!

I am not sure whether members of the Philippine Senate are simply clueless or just plain scared!  It seems to me that they may have deluded themselves (except for Senator TG Guingona III who opposed the law) with unfounded and inflated fear that caused this state of legislative panic.  As the principal author of the law, who abstained from the vote, forebodingly warned us: “With one click, you can send it all over the world”.

As to why he did not cast his vote, I find that odd but I don't have an explanation.

But really?  Who wouldn’t be scared when one of its members—who is allegedly credited as behind the online libel rider in Republic Act 10175--was globally exposed and humiliated for plagiarizing?  Instead of admitting wrongdoing, he came up with an elaborate alibi for being
disingenuous, but to no avail.  He was tagged as a “lying thief”.

Unfortunately, he is a slow learner because he plagiarized again. This time, it's the 1966 speech of the late Democratic Senator Robert F. Kennedy of New York in South Africa.

Now seemingly scared out of their wits, many of its members are jumping on the bandwagon trying to extricate themselves from voting in favor of the libel clause of the law.  One member even claimed that the law he signed did not contain the libel clause.  Unfortunately, that was not the case.  He did sign the final version that was approved by the bicameral committee and sent to President Benigno Aquino for signing.

Now, this is becoming more fun.

I just read that the President, who was reactively quick on the draw, is now having second thoughts about the online libel that he just signed into law.  He is now speaking of the possibility of decriminalizing online libel.

What’s going on here?

I think supporters of the controversial legislation are slowly beginning to see the danger of becoming target marks of the cyber domain.  I think they’re beginning to realize with foreboding that the century emerging before their eyes has turned them into irrelevant half-relics of the past and half-orphans of the present.

Nowhere else does such apprehension become more pronounced than in the impact of cyberspace and digital technology that pervades our day-to-day lives.  Take for instance the following: globally, in 2011 one out of eleven people belonged to a social network, nearly 5
billion people used mobile (about 67% of the world's population), and about 2.2 billion people (about 33% of the world's population) used the internet.

How does one deal with this reality?

The fact is, we can no longer make our politics local and exclusive when our digital condition has made it easier and quicker for communication to take place between remote locations, thereby making our porous and borderless world unavoidably smaller, like a global village.

Considering the phenomenon of instantaneous communication and the speed with which information can now be moved around the globe, we must learn to be expectant rather than anxious of change.  That is, to embrace online free speech rather than fear its ramifications to our egos or social identities.

And when it comes to online libel and the news media, I wouldn’t make them our scapegoats. It’s true that journalists, reporters, and bloggers can be culpable for hyperbolizing and sensationalizing scares, but they also debunk and criticize one another for spooking the public. Seriously, I wouldn’t touch them with a ten-foot pole. Besides, they are overrated in their influence.

article from http://www.gmanetwork.com/news/story/279102/opinion/blogs/the-philippine-cybercrime-law-repealing-the-21st-century
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