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Thailand Launches Its First Legal Action Against Facebook and Twitter

Reuters reports:
Thailand launched legal action on Thursday against tech giants Facebook and Twitter for ignoring requests to take down content, in its first such move against major internet firms… “Unless the companies send their representatives to negotiate, police can bring criminal cases against them,” the Ministry of Digital Economy and Society, Puttipong Punnakanta, told reporters. “But if they do, and acknowledge the wrongdoing, we can settle on fines….”

The complaints were against the U.S. parent companies and not their Thai subsidiaries, Puttipong said. Cybercrime police at a news conference said they would need to look at existing laws to determine whether they had jurisdiction to take up cases against firms based outside of Thailand.

Emilie Pradichit, executive director of Manushya Foundation, a digital freedom advocate, said the complaints were “a tactic to scare these companies….” Thailand has a tough lese majeste law prohibiting insulting the monarchy and a Computer Crime Act that outlaws information that is false or affects national security has also been used to prosecute criticism of the royal family.

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