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X's Porn Policy Draws Fire: Southeast Asian Authorities Say It Breaks Local Laws

X's Porn Policy Draws Fire: Southeast Asian Authorities Say It Breaks Local Laws

Elon Musk's social media platform X (formerly Twitter) has updated its policy to allow the consensual production and distribution of pornography, provided it's labeled and not publicly visible. 

However, such content may not be displayed as profile pictures or banners. X also prohibits content that promotes exploitation, non-consent, objectification, sexualization, or harm to minors, as well as lewd behavior. On its website, the company states that sexual expression can be considered a legitimate form of artistic expression.

Several Southeast Asian governments have criticized the move, saying it contradicts local laws. 

According to CNA, Indonesia's Communication Minister, Budi Arie Setiadi, stresses the need for X to comply with Indonesian laws banning pornographic content. He threatens fines or platform blocks for violations. Similarly, Malaysia's Communications Minister, Fahmi Fadzil, condemns X's violation of Malaysian laws, including rules against online gambling and pornography. Malaysia will communicate a strong stance on this policy change to X.

Meanwhile, in the Philippines, Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT) Assistant Secretary Jeffrey Ian Dy stresses the importance of laws that empower local authorities to regulate social media. DICT advocates regulation to address issues of cultural sensitivity and to ensure that platforms like X comply with local laws.

But some argue against such measures. Ismail, founder of Drone Emprit, says that X is an important platform for social discourse in Indonesia, and blocking it could harm freedom of expression. He also notes that other platforms such as TikTok, Instagram, and Facebook are not reliable for open criticism.

Meanwhile, an X user states that the management of sexual content on X should be left to users' decisions, as the Internet provides active choices for content consumption. Users are considered adults and responsible for content consumption, not just the government.

Tags: elon musk law x

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