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ASEAN addresses ‘fake news’

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ASEAN addresses ‘fake news’ | The Thaiger

The Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) has acknowledged that “fake news” is one of the new challenges its member-countries must grapple with now that digital media are citizens’ primary sources of information.

False and misleading news was among the chief topics at the 14th meeting of the Asean Ministers Responsible for Information today (Thursday).

The ministers issued a Declaration on a Framework to Minimise the Harmful Effects of Fake News. At the meeting, which had “Inclusive and Informed Digital Asean” as its theme, the ministers also agreed that member-countries should work together to improve digital literacy, encourage relevant agencies to develop guidelines for responding to fake news, and share “best practices”.

They set out four “broad strategies” for members to use in addressing online falsehoods – education and awareness, detection and response, norms and guidelines, and community and “ground-up” participation. These can be tailored to the unique circumstances of each country in terms of laws and regulations, it was agreed.

The ministers stated that mitigating the harmful effects of fake news was “everyone’s responsibility”. Singapore Finance Minister Heng Swee Keat said the framework would improve regional cooperation in establishing “a trusted digital ecosystem where people will be guaranteed access to reliable sources of information”.

Singapore’s Minister for information and Communications, S Iswaran, said the meeting would nurture “a digitally ready ASEAN” and “fuel digital growth” in the region.

“Members must work closely together to promote socially responsible online behaviour,” he said, “to ensure that the digital space remains one that is safe, reliable and conducive for everyone to interact with one another freely and with confidence.”

Fake news emerged as a concern at an AMRI roundtable discussion last year. Singapore has planned a workshop at the current meeting on best practices and countermeasures. Several ASEAN members have already taken steps towards curbing the negative effects of fake news.

Earlier this year, Malaysia turned its fact-checking portal Sebenarnya.my into a mobile-phone application. Citizens can check the authenticity of news and submit queries regarding unverified information.

Masyarakat Anti Fitnah Indonesia, a civic group, set up a Facebook page where people can report and discuss suspected falsehoods. It has six full-time fact-checkers and a search engine listing legitimate news sites. Heng said Singapore convened a parliamentary select committee earlier this year to investigate deliberate online falsehoods.

“The committee held public hearings to seek views from various sectors on practical solutions to address fake news and is currently putting together its recommendations,” he said.

Heng noted that the World Economic Forum has identified “misinformation going viral online” as one of the biggest threats to society. ASEAN is not immune, he said.

The ministers also approved a set of Core Values on Digital Literacy as a starting point for further discussion aimed at helping citizens “navigate the digital media landscape safely and responsibly”.

Also endorsed was a Framework for Co-production in the Audio-Visual Sector to improve content producers’ skills in production techniques. The Digital Terrestrial Television broadcasting system (DVB-T2) and Integrated Receiver Decoder Technical Specifications will be revised to ensure mobile and portable DVB-T2 receivers meet minimum standards. The system allows people to watch free-to-air channels on their portable devices via terrestrial transmission. Government messages can be transmitted while people are on the move.

STORY: The Nation


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People

‘Big Joke’ is the ‘real deal’ according to Thai Rath

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‘Big Joke’ is the ‘real deal’ according to Thai Rath | The Thaiger

PHOTOS: Thai Rath

Thai Rath have published a feature on the closest person Thailand has to Batman (aka Maj-Gen Surachate Hakparn) or “Big Joke” as he’s affectionately know to the Thai media. He’s taken the role of Thailand’s poster-boy crime fighter.

He’s also recently been promoted to the top job at Thai Immigration.

The article says that Big Joke is the ‘real deal’ and his appointment will mean greater security for the country and better services to the wider public. They say that will include tourists and expatriates in Thailand.

Two weeks ago Maj-Gen Surachate Hakparn replaced the former Immigration Chief, Suthipong Wongpin, who took a sidewards step to become the head of the metropolitan police in Bangkok, a year before his retirement.

Surachate attracted the attention of the Thai government while working as deputy commander of the Thai Tourist Police.

His “One World One Team” vision emphasises teamwork and cooperation, not just within Thailand but internationally, according to the Thai Rath article.

Many have criticised “Big Joke” for being nothing more than a poster boy and ‘lackey’ of the elite but the Thai media is say this is ‘shallow thinking’. Surachate’s supporters point to his ‘modern methods’ in crime solving and dedication to stop corruption (which we note also appear to involve a lot of photos and media conferences parading the baddies in public).

“He is seen as new style of policeman the like of which Thailand has rarely if ever seen before”, reports Thai Rath.

Many illegal foreigners posing as tourists have already been rounded up, sent home and black-listed creating a fear of further crackdowns. But Surachate says he’s determined to root out illegals and criminals and protect the multi-billion dollar tourism industry.

“Ultimately bona fide tourists and expats will reap the benefit through greater security and improved service from immigration”.

Deputy PM Prawit Wongsuwan its also calling for heightened security with an ‘international focus’.

Surachate believes in giving greater satisfaction to foreigners in Thailand as well as committing to coordination within Thai police departments and foreign agencies.

Critics say that many of those arrested are relatively small fry and that “No Tip” signs that have gone up at immigration entry points are merely paying lip service to the issue. But Thai Rath seem convinced that ‘Big Joke’ is the real deal and will make a true difference.

'Big Joke' is the 'real deal' according to Thai Rath | News by The Thaiger 'Big Joke' is the 'real deal' according to Thai Rath | News by The Thaiger

SOURCE: Thai Rath

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Bangkok

‘Monk’ tries some alternative enlightenment

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‘Monk’ tries some alternative enlightenment | The Thaiger

Thai Rath has shared a widely viewed CCTV clip featuring a man, apparently a monk, in saffron robes swinging a beer bottle at a man in a food market. The alleged monk appears to be holding a beer bottle.

According to Thai Rath, the layman, believed to be a store-holder, confronted the monk asking why he was drinking beer in the market at 9am and not praying in the temple.

The reporters even questioned whether the man was a real monk as his behavior was not befitting of a Buddhist monk.

They said that real monks should not be drinking beer, at any time, and should be in their temple after the morning alms round.

The incident is believed to have taken place in a Bangkok food court.

SOURCE: Thai Rath

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Phuket

Mai Khao’s ‘West Sands’ CEO being quizzed by police following last week’s death on Thepkasattri Road

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Mai Khao’s ‘West Sands’ CEO being quizzed by police following last week’s death on Thepkasattri Road | The Thaiger

PHOTO: Facebook.com – Paul John Mercer

The British CEO of a luxury hotel along Mai Khao Beach in Phuket, is going to be quizzed by police in Phuket after running over and killing a roadside scavenger in his luxury Mercedes last week.

Original report about the Wednesday morning incident HERE.

The British expat is being investigated by Thai police after his Mercedes-Benz ploughed into the rubbish collector, killing the man instantly and scattering his body over the road.

Paul John Mercer, CEO of CCD Thailand, an international developer of luxury hotels, allegedly struck the unidentified man as he was pushing his rubbish cart along Thepkasattri Road in Phuket early Wednesday morning. His body was dragged 40 metres along the road, according to the police report. At this stage Police have not been able to identify the deceased man.

Police and rescue workers found the man’s body scattered over the road. The black Mercedes sustained significant damage from the crash on its right side front and windscreen.

Mail Online reports the the 33 year old driver, from Salford near Manchester, was immediately sent to a nearby hospital for injuries to his eyes caused by the impact to the windscreen.

Police had been barred from seeing or questioning Mr Mercer until his condition improved. Police requested tests for the man’s blood alcohol level.

If found guilty of driving over the alcohol limit, Mr Mercer could be charged with reckless driving causing death, and would be sent to a local court for trial. A guilty verdict could send him to a Thai prison along with a hefty fine. Plus, as normal in Thai culture, he would be required to pay compensation to the deceased man’s family.

But Police Captain Worawut Sensop, deputy investigation chief at Thalang police station, told MailOnline “We have not been contacted by a family member or a relative to claim the body.”

“If no relative comes forward to claim relationship with the victim, Mr Mercer could get away with not having to pay any compensation.”

Mr Mercer went into business with former Tesco CEO, Sir Terry Leahy, to buy the 48 acre stretch of land along Mai Khao Beach, Phuket, with 426 rooms, now known as Grand West Sands.

Mai Khao's 'West Sands' CEO being quizzed by police following last week's death on Thepkasattri Road | News by The Thaiger Mai Khao's 'West Sands' CEO being quizzed by police following last week's death on Thepkasattri Road | News by The Thaiger Mai Khao's 'West Sands' CEO being quizzed by police following last week's death on Thepkasattri Road | News by The Thaiger Mai Khao's 'West Sands' CEO being quizzed by police following last week's death on Thepkasattri Road | News by The Thaiger

SOURCE: Mail Online

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