Keyboard warriors under Imams’ scrutiny

|     Azlan Othman     |

RELIGIOUS authorities yesterday censured social media users who abuse technology to spread rumours and misinformation.

“If you are helping to disseminate information, be sure that it is correct and authentic, as you can get into trouble with the law for spreading unverified news,” said Imams during yesterday’s Friday sermon.

Under Section 34 of the Public Order Act (Chapter 148), legal action can be taken against those who distribute false or misleading information which can cause panic, fear and anxiety among the public.

Anyone who spreads false reports or makes false statements, whether verbally or in writing or by any other means that are likely to cause public alarm or distress, is guilty of an offence that carries the penalty of three years in imprisonment and a BND3,000 fine.

“Every single repost or the sharing of a defamatory statement is evil, and we must be cautious when causing messages or information to go ‘viral’ without any verification or fact-checking,” said the Imams.

“We must be responsible for everything that we circulate, and not spread falsehoods.”