Social Media Giants Face Action Over URLs Breaking Thai Laws

Social Media Giants Face Action

The Digital Economy and Society (DES) Ministry will on Thursday submit more evidence to the police to take legal action against social media platforms that do not obey the law and remove URLs deemed inappropriate.

“The ministry is compiling more evidence and will give it to police at the Technology Crime Suppression Division [TCSD],” said DES Minister Buddhipongse Punnakanta.

Mr Punnakanta said these social media platforms, including Facebook, were violating the Computer-Related Crime Act BE 2550 by not shutting shut down their illegal URLs.

He said the DES would also ask the Criminal Court to reject Facebook’s appeal not to close down its 17 URLs.

Meanwhile, Putchapong Nodthaisong, deputy permanent secretary for the DES Ministry, told the Bangkok Post that YouTube and Twitter should also face legal action if they continued to keep open URLs deemed inappropriate.

Mr Nodthaisong said 661 of the offending sites were on Facebook, 289 on YouTube, 69 on Twitter and the rest on other platforms.

YouTube has told the ministry that it has closed down all but three or four of the sites in question, he said, while Facebook has closed down 200 and Twitter has shut only 10.

Mr Nodthaisong said his ministry would ask the Office of the Attorney General to lodge a police complaint against Twitter.

According to the Computer-Related Crime Act BE 2550, any violator can be fined up to 5,000 baht per day that offending sites remain open.

The DES is also looking into the way social media covered the weekend’s protest to see whether users posted any comments that defamed the monarchy. If any such users are identified, the ministry would file complaints with police against them and ask the court to close down their accounts, he said.

The DES ministry is also considering legal action against Twitter user Tom Yutherleart for changing his handle to try to mislead people into thinking it was an official MDES account.