The authorities in Thailand don’t like people insulting the Royal Family and have taken action to silence the disbelievers. They have blocked over 5,000 webpages which insult their monarcy on some level.
These pages were taken down between December and March, according to Piya Utayo, the national police spokesman. He said “We found that the number of inappropriate or insulting posts was less and less.” although he didn’t explain the reduction.
Article 112, Lese Majeste of the Thai criminal code was created to protect senior royals from insult but many say that it has been politicised in recent years. This means ‘injured majesty’. The people found guilty of this crime could face up to 15 years in jail. Wipas Raksakulthai posted on Facebook, insulting the Royal Family and has been charged with the crime. We don’t know the exact details of his penalties.
Unlike the United Kingdom, their own royal family is a very sensitive subject in Thailand, and the 84 year old king Bhumibol Adulyadej is almost treated like a god in certain quarters of his homeland.
Rights group Reporters Without Borders said “If Thailand continues down the slope of content filtering and jailing netizens on lèse-majesté charges, it could soon join the club of the world’s most repressive countries as regards the internet.”
Other countries are following suit in regards to blocking the flow of information online. China, Iran, India and Pakistan have, or are working on national content filtering systems.
Kitguru says: The UK are unlikely to copy the plan, so for those ‘anti royals’ reading this, no need to panic.