New Zealand wants to purge cyber bullying so they are criminalizing digital communications that cause serious emotional distress. Does this law go too far? John Iadarola and Ana Kasparian (The Point) hosts of The Young Turks discuss.
The wide-reaching law is designed to crack down on cyber-bullying, with serious offences attracting up to two years in jail or fines of up to $50,000.
The Harmful Digital Communications Bill passed its third and final reading on Tuesday night by 116 votes to five, with ACT’s David Seymour and four Green MPs voting against it.
It introduces a range of measures, including setting up an agency to investigate and address damaging electronic communications spread through emails, texts and social media posts.
The law was drafted after a case in Auckland in which teenage boys boasted online about sex with drunk and underage girls, leading to the girls being further victimised.
New Zealand First deputy leader Tracey Martin told Parliament that people needed to be protected from anonymous and vicious comments made on apps such as Yik Yak.
She said that app had particularly nasty effects in secondary schools.
Ms Martin said people got hooked into Yik Yak by becoming popular after making five or more really horrible comments.”