Yaacob bats for code of conduct for online behaviour

Should there be guidelines to ensure appropriate behavior among Internet users?

That was one idea brought up on Saturday by Minister for Information, Communications and the Arts Yaacob Ibrahim, who reportedly said that such guidelines can moderate online discussions to prevent offending other groups or communities.

While Yaacob, who is also Minister-in-charge of Muslim Affairs, praised the Malay-Muslim community for their calm response to the incidents, he also pointed out that the community would have to handle such posts in the future, reported The Sunday Times.

His comments came after a recent spate of insensitive online postings made on Facebook related to Islam. Blogger Donaldson Tan came under investigation for re-posting a picture offensive to Muslims.

Former Young PAP member Jason Neo and national serviceman Christian Eliab Ratnam have also drawn the attention of authorities for their posts of photos appearing similarly offensive. 

In its addenda to the Presidential Address for the opening of the 12th Parliament, the Ministry of Law also said it will review legislation to deal with unlawful online conduct, saying that the “proliferation of new media has brought about new challenges to the rule of law”.