Update: GMA 7 embraced our advocacy and launched “think before you click” campaign
The Philippines need to have “teeth” to enforce web safety in the country.
The OpenNet Initiative made a graphic representation of countries with different levels of internet censorship. According to the results, our country is “no censorship” zone. This thing is peculiar since the United States screen web contents more, despite of the fact they are a democratic champion. As you can see the image provided, India, Canada and US have “some censorship” while Russia and Australia is “under surveillance” and the black parts like China and Arab nations are under “pervasive censorship”
In programming sense, censorship is filtering out of content that uses any of the banned tags and keywords set by a government. They set some rules on what content are allowed for internet access depending on their what they are try to protect the public from. They may censor depending on their traditional values, national security and political stability. No wonder the US government, as an example puts more emphasis on monitoring blogs and NGOs sites since these pages can also tackle social issues such as poverty, prostitution and criticizingly the government -contents that are highly censored. The funny thing is that these blogs have more censored content than any other site -even for militant groups. Thus censorship is no longer about removing illegal content, it to quash local protests or messages that may disturb public order and safety.
Back to the Philippines: With the majority of our your generation being exposed to a censor-less internet, what can we do to ensure cyber wellness? Parents and people in the academe and gov’t must be educated so that we can teach our kids to “self-criticize” a content. We enjoy so much freedom here , that illegal contents can find it’s way to our kids. That is why we, at Web Safety PH, are committed to add value and safety to internet use among the Filipino family. Let’s educate internet users to be smart and safe online.