Vietnam bans individuals from blogging news reports, other information

Vietnamese government has taken a tough stance against bloggers and has passed a new regulation under which individuals are only allowed to share information belonging to them through status updates or blogs or on their websites. Individuals or organizations shouldn’t post information such as news excerpts from other websites or sources, which they do not own.

The news was first reported by Vietnamese news site Tuoitrenews which noted that the new regulation was signed by Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung in mid-July and will be effective from next month.

The regulation defines ‘personal information webpage’ as “a webpage created by an individual on their own or via a social network.” The regulation explicitly states that “This page should be used to provide and exchange information of that individual; it does not represent other individual or organization, and is not allowed to provide complied information.”

Director of broadcasting and electronic information department at the Ministry of Information and Communication, Hoang Vinc Bao, added that such ‘personal information webpages’ are only allowed to put news that are owned by the person and are not allowed to either “quote”, “gather” or summarize information that is available through press organizations and / or government websites.

The new regulation seems to be in connection with last year’s sentencing of three bloggers who posted political articles on their own blogs as well as banned Vietnamese site, which the court ruled were against the country’s government and communist rule.

The latest regulation has given rise of debates about what users in Vietnam can and can’t do. Users believe that because of the regulation it would be illegal to post status updates with a link to some official news source on Facebook and such social network sites.

If you are reading this and are in Vietnam, what do you think? Let us know in the comments section.