Police threatens 'Sarawak Talk' website with ISA
Police threatens Sarawak Talk website with ISA
NEW STRAITS TIMES
Friday, November 29, 2002
Tracing people who posted hate messages
on Sarawak Talk website
KUCHING, Nov 26 Sarawak police are tracing the people who posted hate messages on Sarawak Talk, a website on Malaysia.net, Commissioner Datuk Yusoff Jaafar said today.
He said a special team had already been formed to trace the sources of the messages.
"We view many of the messages as seditious. They are capable of arousing racial and religious sentiments," he told reporters after a monthly parade at the police headquarters here.
Yusoff said the messages included belittling the religion of a particularly community.
"If these people continue to post such hate messages, other people will get angry and do things outside the laws," he said.
Yusoff also said some of the messages character assassinated State and Federal leaders.
The State leaders, in their discussions with him, had expressed their concerned at the posting of the messages.
Surfers caught with posting the messages could be charged under the Sedition Act, 1948 or the Penal Code.
"We can even detain them under the Internal Security Act," he said.
2:46pm Fri Nov 29th, 2002
S'wak police chief threatens cyber vandals with ISA
Sarawak police chief Mohd Yusoff Jaafar has threatened to use the Internal
Security Act (ISA) against cyber vandals who stir up racial and religious
hatred in the state.
Referring to the popular Sarawak Talk website which, of late, has seen
numerous anonymous postings of seditious religious messages, he warned that
the days of these phantom voters are numbered.
"It is possible to trace the culprits although they are hiding behind a veil
of pseudonyms. My men are very close to nailing them," Yusoff was quoted by
the Sarawak Tribune as saying yesterday.
Expressing concern over the ill-intended messages posted on the website,
Yusoff said they can stir up racial and religious hatred and threatened the
peace in the state.
"I have discussed the matter with the state government and they too are very
concerned. We are now focusing on the action to take," he said.
...Ironically, Yusoff's statement has evoked a lot of responses from regulars
of the Sarawak Talk site over the past two days. While most were
police-bashing postings, there were also several responsible reactions.
One suggested that the Sarawak police should concentrate its resources on
solving the increasing number of crimes in the state rather than to waste
their time tracking down cyber vandals who do not pose too much of a problem
to the majority of Sarawakians.
The message said most Sarawakians still do not have access to the Internet
and that the number of people visiting the Sarawak Talk site was relatively
Meanwhile, a senior Sarawak journalist told malaysiakini today that he was
appalled at the police commissioner's ISA threat saying that the draconian
legislation should only be used against those who are found to be real
threats to national security, and certainly not "harmless' Sarawakians who
are probably having some fun in cyberspace.
On the other hand, he also argued that the Sarawak Talk website can be a
good outlet for people to vent their anger and frustration at what they feel
strongly against. Without such an outlet, these people will feel stifled, he
"We are now promoting the Multmedia Super Corridor and the prime minister
has promised that there will be no censorship on the Internet. Will the
Sarawak police be going backward with their action?" the journalist asked.
Snapshots of Sarawak Talk
1. It's a web forum with the feel-and-look of early days Internet BBB.
2. It's hosted by Malaysia.net, which also hosts MGG Pillai's SangKancil.
3. It's content is akin to those found in soc.culture.alt, though sensible postings pop up occasionally.
Sarawak Police Chief's Comments - Rajah Brooke's Ghost 07:56:16 11/29/2002
Allah - God of Terror and Hate - Zeus 19:17:54 11/28/2002
Men should sit down to pee at own home !!! - Housewife (cleaner) 07:02:09 11/29/2002
Sibu's indonesian maids are bodoh, paloi, - blockhead, gila, stupid, fools, 09:41:53 11/29/2002