Ali Khamenei, the Supreme Leader of the Islamic Republic of Iran, has called for laws to be passed to stop “rumors and false claims” from spreading online, in a move that mirrors the actions of numerous governments around the world, as well as Silicon Valley companies. In a recent speech, Khamenei called for the spreaders of misinformation to be prosecuted. Via Reclaim the Net: “Psychological security is one of the rights of the people. What is psychological security?” Iran’s Supreme leader in his latest speech. “It means that each day rumors, false claims, and frightening statements should not be spread in people’s minds. Until yesterday, it was just the newspapers that spread lies. But now, the internet has been added to it. “Once every few days or every few hours, rumors or false claims by specific or unknown individuals are published on the internet which frightens people and disturbs their minds. A lie spread as a rumor. One of the responsibilities of the judiciary is to deal with this issue. Khamenei added, “I’ve heard some here say that we don’t have a law for this. We can use the existing laws and find the appropriate sentence for this. If we don’t have the law we should create new laws quickly.” Iran’s move is part of a global trend. An advisor to the Chinese government called for new laws to tackle online “fake news” earlier this year.
The European Union is also reportedly preparing a “sweeping” new law that would require companies like Google and Facebook to take down “misinformation,” as defined by the EU.
The government of Turkey, which borders Iran, is also planning an anti-misinformation law. In the United States, the First Amendment prohibits the government from regulating misinformation — but that hasn’t stopped the media from pressuring Silicon Valley companies to voluntarily follow the example of China and other countries with official censorship regimes. Allum Bokhari is the senior technology correspondent at Breitbart News. He is the author of #DELETED: Big Tech’s Battle to Erase the Trump Movement and Steal The Election. Follow him on Twitter @LibertarianBlue. .
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