SINGAPORE : For the first time in Singapore, two bloggers have been charged under the Sedition Act for making racist remarks. They are 25-year-old Nicholas Lim Yew and 27-year-old Benjamin Koh Song Huat. A subordinate court was told that both their blogs had content that cast aspersions on the Malay community...Now we all know how ambiguous these sorts of things can be (remember the scholar?), especially in the context of online content like forum posts and blog entries. I wonder what the real story is. I also didn't know at first what 'sedition' meant, I only knew it's quite a serious thing. But strangely enough, as SGInk points out, there's something amiss about the definition of this Act. Sedition actually means words or actions that make people rebel against authority, 煽动判乱的言论或行动. 'To cast aspersions on' means to attack the reputation of someone. In the meantime, Gabriel's advice is good: stick to infantile stuff! Update!: The CNA article as now been updated and expanded, but the 'cast aspersions' part has been removed. It now reads:
Twenty-five-year-old Nicholas Lim Yew and 27-year-old Benjamin Koh Song Huat are being accused of posting racist comments on an online forum and on their blog site. They are both being charged with committing a seditious act, by promoting feelings of ill-will and hostility between races in Singapore. They were not represented by defence lawyers and were granted bail of S$10,000 each...Hmm... what happened to their lawyers? Update (!!): I have been looking around GoogleCache and found some blogs that talk about the upsaid.com blog (now deleted). Seems to me if we want to catch bloggers with racist entries, there are many, many more to go around. Personally, I do hope that there are sufficient grounds for this conviction. If not, well... In the meantime, HuiChieh has a comprehensive roundup. And Mr Miyagi has just Todayed me. Well, at least it's better than the last time I was quoted in a newspaper talking about, of all things, pr0n. Update (!!!): One more blogger has been found to be SediActious. Mr. Wang urges all to keep things in perspective. Things are not as bad as they look. Update (!V): HuiChieh rounds them up.