We have laws, but they exist not to be abused. Or perhaps, they are?
KUALA LUMPUR: Umno Information chief Tan Sri Muhammad Muhammad Taib said people shouldn't base their beliefs solely on articles written in weblogs or blogs.
He claimed there were some bloggers who wrote with a slant that tended to side with Opposition views.
Muhammad said Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi appeared fine despite what had been reported in the Internet on Sunday.
"He joked and met the press. However, what was reported in blogs was different.
"The Internet reports are mischievious with the intention to cause panic in Umno and Barisan Nasional, and it can create a negative situation in the country.
"The people should check their facts first and not believe everything they read on the Internet," he told reporters at the Parliament lobby on Monday.
He was commenting on Internet reports which claimed that the Prime Minister had fainted while attending a function in Lumut on Sunday.
Muhammad said action should be taken against bloggers who knowingly spread false rumours.
Energy,Water & Communications Ministry Deputy Minister Datuk Shaziman Abu Mansor said the ministry would cooperate with the Internal Security Ministry if it received a request to investigate the source of the online rumour.
He added that Section 211 and 233 of the Communications and Multimedia Act stated that action could be taken on offensive Internet content or improper use of network facilities, which provided a fine of RM50,000, a year's jail or both.
The Act's Bill of Guarantee ensured that Internet content should not be censored, he said when asked whether the Government would regulate Internet content.
"I've not read the blog itself, but action can be taken under the Penal Code by the Internal Security Ministry," he told reporters at the Parliament lobby.
Please read Jeff Ooi's Screenshots for his take on Mat Taib's and Shaziman's remarks.