Vietnam To Censor Blogs

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Vietnam To Censor Blogs

According to recent reports from BBC News, Vietnam is planning to put restrictions on the material published through blogs in the country.

Officials say they will ban the publication of blogs related to certain topics that they consider inappropriate.

Although government sources say they are in the process of “regulating” the system, it is obviously a way to censor information.

At the present moment, about 25% of the population of Vietnam, that is over 20 million people use the Internet, and blogs have become an important source for people to learn the latest news, as there is a lot of control and restriction on traditional media.

The guidelines being issued through a government document state that only “clean and wholesome” language should be used and bloggers should follow Vietnamese law. Users are also prohibited from discussing topics of national security, state secrets and any other subject which may incite violence.

Internet Service Providers will be held responsible for the matter published through their websites, although international service providers such as Google and Yahoo! have not yet been approached officially.

If the government gets its way, the service providers will have to report to them every six months and also provide information about bloggers on request.

The director of the state-run Bach Khoa Internet Security Center said they would manage the system through “random checks”. They would be creating a legal corridor, thus enabling the bloggers to decide what is right and wrong, and inform the government when violations are found.

If these suggestions are passed into law, violators would face up to $12,000 in fines or 12 years in jail.