Thailand’s Digital Economy Minister ‘clarifies’ about the posting of crime pics or videos online

Thailand’s Digital Economy and Society Minister, Chaiwut Thanakamanusorn, is warning crime witnesses that spreading pictures or videos of the incidents via online channels ‘could’ violate the new Personal Data Protection Act or PDPA. The minister says the safer way to help victims is to hand the evidence to the police officers.

Thailand officially operated the PDPA or the Personal Data Protection Act on June 1. Then 2 weeks ago, there was a report on a woman who avoided taking pictures of thieves because she was scared of the PDPA and worried that the thieves would sue her for “spreading their personal information”.

So Chaiwut clarified the act and insisted that this case didn’t fall into the realms of the act. He insisted that there was nothing to worry about because the act was announced to protect people and their data. He also added that uploading pictures or videos which accidentally included others wasn’t illegal if the posters didn’t aim to defame those persons.

The PDPA became a hot topic after a flight between a popular male Thai celebrity and his girlfriend. On June 9, the media reported that the star, Atikhun “Kenly” Chottanatpiti, aka Kenly Take Me Out, attacked his girlfriend in a public space at a condominium in Bangkok. One woman witnessed the incident and tried to help the female victim. She also recorded a video of the incident and posted it on social media to unmask the male celebrity.

Kenly asked the woman to delete the video, but she reportedly refused. So, Kenly said he would file a complaint to the police that the woman violated PDPA by spreading his video without his consent.

Many Thai netizens saw that the woman was a good person who tried to help others and shouldn’t face charges. People said ‘weaponising’ the new act in this way, and in this case, would seem unfair.

Last Sunday, Chaiwut was forced to explain the law again. He said uploading pictures or videos that included others via online channels could violate laws, but it might not break the PDPA depending on each case. He said the persons included in the pictures or videos could file complaints against the posters. Chaiwut recommended that witnesses shouldn’t keep the photos or video but instead and hand them to the police or relevant officials.

(Well, that’s as clear as mud!)

Chaiwut added that uploading pictures or videos online or spreading news online weren’t the main topics that PDPA focused on. The act specifically focused on protecting residents’ data collected and stored by agencies or third persons.

SOURCE: The Ministry of Digital Economy and Society | Kapook

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Petch Petpailin

Petpailin, or Petch, is a Thai translator and writer for The Thaiger who focuses on translating breakingThai news stories into English. With a background in field journalism, Petch brings several years of experience to the English News desk at The Thaiger. Before joining The Thaiger, Petch worked as a content writer for several known blogging sites in Bangkok, including Happio and The Smart Local. Her articles have been syndicated by many big publishers in Thailand and internationally, including the Daily Mail, The Sun and the Bangkok Post. She is a news writer who stops reading news on the weekends to spend more time cafe hopping and petting dwarf shrimp! But during office hours, you can find Petch on LinkedIn and you can reach her by email at

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