Thursday, January 13, 2011

The Online Citizen -- Gazetted

The Online Citizen have been gazetted as a Political Association.

What exactly does that mean?

1) It cannot get foreign donations.

(I don't think it is funded by foreign elements or sources anyway.)

2) They need to list the identities of its owners, editorial team and administrators.

(Well you probably can tell who the editors are anyway. It is practically there.)

Wait... as political website under condition 4 of the Schedule to the Broadcasting (Class License) Notification.

What is this Condition 4?

"An Internet Content Provider who is or is determined by the Authority to be a body of persons engaged in the propagation, promotion or discussion of political or religious issues relating to Singapore on the World Wide Web through the Internet, shall register with the Authority within 14 days after the commencement of its service, or within such longer time as the Authority may permit"


What is a Political Association? According to the Political Donations Act,

"political association" means —

(a) a political party or an organisation which has as one of its objects or activities the promotion or procuring of the election to Parliament or to the office of President of a candidate or candidates endorsed by the organisation; or

(b) an organisation (not being a branch of any organisation) whose objects or activities relate wholly or mainly to politics in Singapore and which is declared by the Minister, by order in the Gazette, to be a political association for the purposes of this Act;

Also Read: "Kingmaker" and "PAP-Breaker" - Political and Proud of It?

Wait, why is the government -- PAP... Or Government / PAP... oh, the terms are so interchangeable isn't it... I mean it should not be because of Singapore being a democracy.. erm... well.. uh-huh...

Well I detract, the question is why should an online blog, there people share views about Singapore in general, with some political views. Well, is it because TOC has been involved in online activism e.g. from its public transport to anti-death penalty campaigns or is it a face-to-face interview with the opposition.

I mean, being branded as a political association ironically legitimises TOC further and enhances its credibility, but on the other hand, the government who seemed to have sued many political opponents in the past may want to take this opportunity to sue them.

Maybe TOC should consult Admiral Ackbar and seek his opinions.

Well, we have it, should TOC just start a new site and close the current blog and export everything, or register as a political gazetted?

-- Iron Bowl

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