Vietnam clamping down on anti-state social media via fines

TN News

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Propaganda against the state and spreading reactionary ideology on the Internet are among the violations that will be subjected to fines of up to VND100 million (US$4,740), according to a government decree taking effect January 15, 2014.

According to the decree signed by Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung, VND100 million is the heaviest fine.

Other violations subjected to the highest fine include "sabotaging the people's solidarity," propaganda supporting invasive war, causing feuds among the peoples and countries, igniting violence, distorting history, defaming the revolution's accomplishments, insulting the Vietnamese peoples and national heroes.

Violations will incur the fines if they are identified to be at degrees insufficient to be investigated criminally, according to the decree.

The 180-page decree also stipulates detailed penalties against other violations.

Information websites operating without a valid license will be fined between VND10-20 million. The fines are from 20-30 million against social media websites with the same violations.

Social media and information websites supplying services in Vietnam without servers in the country are subjected to fines of between VND20-30 million.

The decree stipulates fines of VND20-30 million against violations including publishing private information without consent, publishing Vietnam's map incorrectly and publishing pornography and violent content.

Vietnam has more than 31 million internet users, more than a third of the country's population of 90 million people.

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