To protest the Ministry of the Interior’s handling of fabricated stories about mistreatment of Filipinos which were spread online, a number of netizens have joined National Chengchi University (NCCU) law professor Mark Liu (劉宏恩) in intentionally posting unfounded rumors on their Facebook pages, challenging police to charge them with violation of the Social Maintenance Act (社會秩序維護法).
“I also posted a story, I urge the police to investigate me as soon as possible,” Liu said in a Facebook post accompanying a story that he made up about an official being refused service at a restaurant.
Liu reused a story posted by a woman surnamed Tung (董) about how she encountered a boxed-meal shop owner saying that he would not sell food to Filipino workers.
As part of the story, Tung said she told the shop owner what he was doing was wrong and bought lunch for the Filipino who had waited outside the shop for over an hour without being served.
Liu used the same story, except he changed the Filipino worker in the story to a government official, and posted it on Facebook.
“There is no need to search for my identity, my name is Mark Liu and I am an associate professor at NCCU’s law school,” Liu said.
“So, Minister of the Interior [Lee Hong-yuan, 李鴻源] who ordered the police to find out who posted the lunchbox story as soon as possible so as to press charges against the author, I would welcome the police investigating me,” he wrote.
Liu said in the post that while it may be morally questionable to post a fabricated story that does not harm anyone on Facebook, “it’s different from breaking the law.”
“It’s regrettable that the media and many netizens don’t know the difference between a legal responsibility and a moral responsibility, but when the interior minister and the police don’t know the difference, it’s a disaster for the rule of law and bad news for human rights,” he added.
Liu said he could not agree with the idea that people who posted fabricated stories are in violation of the Social Order Maintenance Act by spreading rumors which “disturb public peace.”
“I only see them making many netizens very unhappy. Or does making netizens unhappy equal disturbing public peace?” he asked.
A number of Internet users supported Liu’s view, with many of them also posting fabricated stories on their Facebook pages and inviting the police to investigate them.
DIPLOMATIC MOVES: Beijing is reportedly pressing the state after reports of forming links with Taiwan, while the ministry is also planning to reopen its office in Guam soon A representative office is set to open in Somaliland at the end of this month, at the earliest, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) said yesterday amid reports that Beijing is sending a diplomatic delegation to the east African country. The ministry on July 1 announced that Taiwan and Somaliland would establish representative offices, following a report by the Somaliland Chronicle Web site. It said at the time that the two nations did not plan to establish formal ties. Somaliland President Muse Bihi Abdi has instructed close confidants to explore the possibility of “mutual recognition between Taiwan and Somaliland,” the Somaliland Chronicle reported
‘IMMORAL, INSINCERE’: Huang Kun-huei said that Ma was ‘distorting history’ in claiming that Lee Teng-hui laid the foundation for the so-called ‘1992 consensus’ Former Presidential Office secretary-general Huang Kun-huei (黃昆輝) on Saturday rejected former president Ma Ying-jeou’s (馬英九) claim that former president Lee Teng-hui (李登輝) had been a proponent of Beijing’s “one China” principle. Lee, who served as president from 1988 to 2000, died in Taipei on Thursday last week. After visiting the Taipei Guest House on Saturday to pay his respects to Lee, Ma posted on Facebook that “28 years ago on this day” Lee hosted a session of the now-defunct National Unification Council, during which he passed a resolution on the “one China” principle. That resolution became the basis of the Chinese Nationalist Party’s
A Belgian man who tested positive for COVID-19 in Taiwan last week is likely to have contracted the disease in Taipei in late June, National Taiwan University (NTU) College of Public Health vice dean Tony Chen (陳秀熙) said yesterday. The Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) on Saturday reported that the man, who is in his 20s, came to Taiwan for work on May 3 and tested positive on Wednesday last week as he was about to depart. The man in March reported loss of taste and smell, the center said, adding that he worked in Changhua County, but visited Taipei several times,
NEW ERA: Taiwan, which has controlled its virus outbreak, now faces the challenge of safely resuming economic exchanges with other nations, Chang Shan-chwen said People should not focus entirely on having zero new confirmed COVID-19 cases in Taiwan, but neglect overall control over the disease situation, Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) specialist advisory panel convener Chang Shan-chwen (張上淳) said yesterday. Chang made the remark at a forum in Taipei discussing the steps Taiwan should take in the post-pandemic era, organized by the Chinese-language magazine Global Views Monthly. Chang, Centers for Disease Control (CDC) Director-General Chou Jih-haw (周志浩), and Stanford University’s Center for Policy, Outcomes and Prevention director C. Jason Wang (王智弘) each made a presentation, followed by a panel discussion with Chang, Wang and Buddhist Tzu