Foreign academics concerned about fake news law in Singapore

'Nearly 100 academics worldwide have expressed concern over Singapore’s proposed law against “fake news”, warning it could threaten academic freedom and hurt the city-state’s ambition to become a global education hub.

The government this month unveiled a bill containing tough measures, including powers for ministers to order sites like Facebook, Google and Twitter to put warnings next to posts authorities deem false, and extreme cases, to take them down.

If an action is deemed malicious and damaging to Singapore’s interests, companies could be hit with fines of up to Sg$1 million ($740,000), while individuals could face jail terms of up to 10 years.
Authorities in the tightly-controlled country insist the measures are necessary to prevent online falsehoods sowing social divisions, but the move has sparked anger from press freedom groups and tech giants such as Facebook and Google.

Now ninety-seven academics from around the world with expertise in Singapore and Asia have signed a letter warning the proposed legislation “may deter scholarship and set precedents harmful to global academia”.'

The above is part of an AFP article posted in theindependent,sg.

What is the problem? I could not see any. Any of you see any problem with fake news and fake news law? I have my reasons to say that there is no problem, all fake news or violation of fake news law would be carefully scrutinised by Shanmugam and he has expressed in Parliament that he would take undue care to make sure fake news are fake news and no unnecessary abuse of law will take place. Not to worry, trust our leaders. No one in the world has there be such a pool of honourable and righteous leaders, men and women of unquestionable integrity, to govern the people and to take care of the people for the good of the people. If such incorruptible individuals cannot be trusted with the implementation of a simple law like fake news, then no govt leaders in any part of the world can be trusted. We have the best govt in the whole world with the brightest and good as priests and priestess people in the govt. What more can you ask for. They are near to infallible, like they said, immortals.

Another way to look at this is to look at the American govt. They are not only the policemen of the world but also defenders of human rights and freedom of speech and expression. If the Americans did not protest, did not see anything wrong, then it can be safely concluded that the fake news law must be good and unquestionable. We are a rule of law country and we maintain our laws judiciously and we respect our laws more than the Ten Commandments. Throughout our history there has been no cases of abuse of the law, abuse of our laws by the ruling govts of the day. Is that not good enough proof and assurance that this law is good law and good people will make sure the law will be used only when necessary.

I think everything is crying wolf, just like the Americans warning the world that Huawei is dangerous or Chinese loans will only lead to debt traps and nothing else. It is all hypes and fear mongering when really there  is absolutely no problem at all.

What do you think? OK you may disagree with me, I know many of you will. I only use my freedom of expression to say what I think is right.  See, there is freedom of expression and the fake news law will just be used against people that misuse the freedom of expression to spread fake news. As long as you are telling the truth, like I just did, you can be sure you will be safe from the fake news law.

Do not be surprised the Americans or Donald Trump will come out in support of our fake news law.


Ⓜatilah $ingapura⚠️ said...

@ any how just tembak lah

Free expression, the free market of ideas and freedom of speech all fall under the same general rubric.

It is not necessary for the content to be true, or conforming to any social norms or mores. The "freedom" being discussed here is only about the individual's autonomy to communicate ideas, regardless of the content of the ideas

It's entirely up to the listener to form their own opinion or judge the content using their own facilities, through their own filters and biases... entirely up to them. If they believe "fake news", that's on them. If they get "offended" that's also on them.

The anti fake news legislation is bad law, as I've mentioned before. Big companies and academia is free to choose whether to conduct their enterprises in Singapore. If they don't like our laws, they are free to boycott Singapore and go elsewhere.

Unfortunately for many of the citizens, they don't have that choice. Anti fake news laws are oppressive to the citizenry. It will always be up to us to decide what we want. If the govt tries to give us something which is bad for us, we're the ones who should push back, take action, or just be DEFIANT.

We get the cuntry, society, laws and the govt we deserve.

Ⓜatilah $ingapura⚠️ said...

@ Lee Hsien Loong’s paranoia

IMO the “iron fist” move against a supposed culture of “fake news” on social media (completely exaggerated and blown way out of proportion) has its roots in PM Lee Hsien Loong’s inability to deal with allegations against him by such parties as:

1 His siblings over the will of his late father Lee Kuan Yew

2 Allegations of his involvement with the 1MDB affair, notably by the now defunct and banned The State Times Review

3 Unflattering commentary from his relatives now domiciled overseas and with no intention of returning to Singapore.

So very cleverly, these negative personal experiences have caused Ho Ching (the real power behind the throne) to garner forces to bring in these laws, designed to HAMPER any political threat to PAP dominance, especially when the next GE is around the corner.

Shanmugam is a kindred spirit. He has never been a fan of Renaissance Values, favouring central control instead. He famously went to the USA and mounted a brave defence for Singapore’s lack of press freedom. essentially citing “govt knows best”. The lacklustre attacks on Shanmugam’s position is quite telling: The Swamp In Washington are so envious that Singapore can get away with a soft top-down dictatorship, and still end up being a resounding economic and social success. The Washington Swamp wishes they had the control Singapore has, and let’s face it’ they would also very much like our ministerial salaries and all those lucrative corporate directorships our top public servants enjoy.

Sure, for many of us, we’ve profited greatly from having the PAP in power for 50+ years. And let’s face it, they do a pretty decent job. But that hardly makes them perfect or immune to being criticised when they need to be told to pull their head in, and to not presume that they have a right or a reason to directly interfere with what goes on in peoples’ minds, or how they EXPRESS the contents of their mental worlds. IMO, they’ve stepped over a line, and they need to be pushed back to their side of the line.

Their job is to run the cuntry. Their job does not encompass running peoples’ minds.

Chua Chin Leng aka redbean said...

Eh, who is the 'we' that have profitted greatly from having the PAP in power....

Anonymous said...

RB, cud it b the 'we' tat Matilar trying to infer r those '69.9%' daftians Sinkies, ( break it up r those pioneer gen, some plp suckers/carriers, whites elites kaki lang, grass loot lang, GICs, garmen people, some young ones all being conned into the etection), as wat KJ said b4 tat Sinkies got the garmen tat they deserves so dun kpkb lah.

Anonymous said...


Sinkies are dumb but not 100% dumb, and they can smell BS after 10 or 20 years. You don't have to look further than ST for the proof.

Just look at this piece of shit SPH share price over the past 15 years

Advertisers & readers have long abandon ST --- for foreign news all along can get directly from overseas sources (usually free). As for important local news, more & more are getting from other alternative sources, or at least cross-checking & 50% from other sources.

Even the usual opiate of the Sinkies masses produced by SPH i.e. low-intelligence entertainment like Shin Ming or Wan Bao or TNP --- are increasingly replaced by freely available similar low-intelligence entertainment on social media.

The only thing unique about SPH is PAPies propaganda. And people don't want to pay for those.

SPH has already given up on news / information business. Today, 2/3 of it's profits comes from properties & property management. SPH is transforming / has transformed itself into a property company.

SPH newspapers are increasingly going to be simply copy-and-paste foreign news from foreign news agencies/newspapers, and copy-and-paste local propaganda from PAPies & local civil service agencies. The newsroom will be filled by 2 groups of people --- retirement jobs for PAPpy sycophants & a large group of useless "journalists" who can't think or write for shit and who cannot get any proper paying jobs outside.

Anonymous said...

What is fake or deliberate falsehood?

At 9ne time, in the past, people accepted that the Earth was flat. So those who said that the Earth was roumd, got executed.

Noe, someone together with his gamgs may assert that they are not involved in 1MDB's behind-the-scenes dealings. But a few years down the road, evidence may surface to prove that so and so was actually directly or indirectly involved in some of the things that affects his truthfulness and integrity. Then how? Who was fake and who is fake?

How do you define falsehood, when the truth is yet to be revealed?

One can only accuse someone of falsehood if he can show the truth.

Anonymous said...

Very surprise, in fact shock, to learn that some Global Academia would conclude that the Fake News Law in a tiny, almost invisible dot on the Atlas, could have a Universal devastating impact on and in the lntellectual
Pursuit of Humankind. lt is just too much of an exaggeration and or overblowing of an issue.
The Chinese Saying that 纸包不住火/paper cannot wraps fire, is indisputably true. ln fact, the Paper shall increase the Fire.

Can l simply put it that the Fake News Law being considered for legislation, shall cause more unhappiness and may even result in chaos and instability in where it gets implemented as Law.
ln this lnternet Era allowing dissemination and transmission of news and information at lightning speed, the Authority better ensure that it upholds its own propriety and integrity. Anything less shall mean its downfall in a matter of time.
Commonsense tells us that no regime can contain any news, fake, false and otherwise, anymore.
Like wild fire and tsunami, by the time meaures are taken, too much damage beyond salvation would have happened.
ln the Case of Fake News Law,


Anonymous said...

only dead and dumb no say

Fake things.

Virgo49 said...

Walter Woon ex AG defending LHY's wifey.

Interesting cases coming up. Also many other cases.

Fake or True News?

Anonymous said...

Then other thing is "Manipulation".
What is Manipulation? Propaganda is Manipulation? Publishinging only what is good and not reporting what is bad - Is this not manipulating the the public's mind?

In a rally, when political hacks only painted a rosy picture about their achievements but did report their bungles and cock-ups - is this not manipulating the voters' mine?

Anonymous said...

KNN, the "auto correct" of Google phone is a nuisance! So many mistakes! Please forgive me.

Lye Khuen Way said...

I am always amazed by Redbean's cynical writing.

Indeed, why worry?
Aren't we blessed to have such a bunch of "honorable", "trustworthy" upright","gracious", and "selfless" politicians looking after you and me? 🤣


Anonymous said...


Pap needs not worry.

They have 70% backings!

The % expected to go up up at next GE! Soon!


Anonymous said...

Singapore's proposed Fake Law is under worldwide condemnation !

Still, 69.9% will vote for them!

Anonymous said...

Whether got fake news law or no fake news law is immaterial to me. I will always use & think about information the same way I have for the past few decades that have allowed me to retire at 42 & build up my portfolio of War Stocks, among many others, and generate 5-figure dividends per month 24/7/365 whether I'm sleeping or holidaying or shitting or eating michelin restaurants or exercising or actually doing some work.

If you don't use the coconut between your ears, doesn't matter if Buddha & Allah & Jesus & Guru Nanak & Guan Yin & LKY & GKS are all standing next to you telling you the secrets of the universe and the winning numbers of the next 10 Toto draws --- you'll still fuck up & CMI.

Anonymous said...

WSG 514pm

Wah! Wah! Wah!

Your monthly dividends 5-figure! $99,888??

Eat-cannot-finish lah!

Good for you! Salute!

Anonymous said...

@Anon 5:54pm

If you are like 95% of Sinkies who have no control of delayed gratification & who are unable to use their coconuts, then even $1,000,000 a month dividends also not enough. E.g. there are some high profile divorces where the ex-wives demand a few million dollars a month alimonies because that is the minimum amount to support their basic lifestyles.

If you use critical thinking & figure out what is truth & what is BS, you should be able to have financial independence by 50 yrs old. Even if that is an average lifestyle in HDB heartland with zero debts & a 4-figure passive income. I believe after 50, a person should only work if he/she wants to, and not becoz have to for survival.

Anonymous said...

Actually, in a country like Singapore, where many people (millions) from all over the world, from all walks of life, come to earn a living and prosper as a result, I don't see why local graduates cannot make themselves comfortable in their own country.

Blaming the government, the employers, the foreigners, or your own luck, is not the right solution. If there are obstacles to your livelihood, what should you do? Get rid of or overcome the obstacles. There are obstacles that are beyond your ability to get rid of. But there are obstacles that you can.

Whether you can or can't get rid of the obstacles, you have to try to overcome them and not allowing them to overcome you. There is nothing impossible to a determined will - the will to not only survive but also succeed.

In order to succeed, you have to focus 100% on whatever you do, especially so when you are young. Don't waste your youth in pursuing a variety of enjoyments that will bring you nowhere but debts.

The saying, "God only helps those who help themselves" is very true (not fake news). If you are determined to help yourself succeed at all costs, you are bound to achieve whatever to achieve. There is no such thing that you can't. It is only a matter of "how long". Some can do it much earlier. Some will take a little bit longer. No matter what, you will succeed if you put your heart and soul to it.

That's the difference between the top 1% and the other 99%!

Virgo 49 said...

Now Mr RB's blog so many Kong Yea Sow!

No wonder the Notre Damn Jens burned.


Virgo 49 said...

Kena burned

Anonymous said...

Agree with RB 200%. If we cannot trust the righteous, honorable and incorruptible immortals who are paid out of this world salaries to rule the Little Red Dot, then there is no one we can trust. Not even God.

Anonymous said...

11.48 lye Kheng way, for insulting Rb article, u need to be sodomized to your senses😰

Anonymous said...

WSG, I think you really need to be sodomized to profit from others misery, suffering and death. Kama and retribution will get you or your family one day. I hope Matilar will sodomize you.😀

Anonymous said...

The above looks like an advertisement by a con man from India. Beware!

Chua Chin Leng aka redbean said...

Thanks Anon 8:03am. Above comment deleted.

Dr Purva Pius said...

Hello Everybody,
My name is Mrs Sharon Sim. I live in Singapore and i am a happy woman today? and i told my self that any lender that rescue my family from our poor situation, i will refer any person that is looking for loan to him, he gave me happiness to me and my family, i was in need of a loan of $250,000.00 to start my life all over as i am a single mother with 3 kids I met this honest and GOD fearing man loan lender that help me with a loan of $250,000.00 SG. Dollar, he is a GOD fearing man, if you are in need of loan and you will pay back the loan please contact him tell him that is Mrs Sharon, that refer you to him. contact Dr Purva Pius, call/whats-App Contact Number +918929509036 via email:(urgentloan22@gmail.com) Thank you.