Bloggers, Netizens Beware of Defamation or Pay SR 500,000 and be Jailed
Bloggers and Netizens in Saudi Arabia, be informed of the existing laws about defamation on social media like Facebook, Snapchat, Twitter, Youtube, Blogging Platform, Instagram and more. According to the news as reported by Arabnews on their recent article “SR500,000 fine, one-year jail for defamation on social media”, the law can impose a fine or imprisonment not exceeding one year or a fine not exceeding SR 500,000 or both.
Speaking to a local daily here, Saeed Al-Omari said that from there the case will be forwarded to the Bureau of Investigation and Public Prosecution for investigation.
“Article (IX) paragraph 4 of the Press and Publication Law has banned abusing the dignity of people and their freedoms, blackmail or damage to their reputation or brand names,” he said.
Due to the above-mentioned article, I have come to a suggestion to fellow bloggers, media publishers and netizen in Saudi Arabia as follows:
- You need to be very careful on what you are posting especially on your reviews, you might face defamation complaint to those whom you are reviewing. Especially if you give negative comments to their services that might damage to their reputation or brand names.
- If it is negative better not to blog about it, be watchful on positive things and blog about it. I don’t ask you to lie about your reviews but if you are not satisfied with it, better to forget it. Just be informative.
- Make sure that you don’t allow automatic approval of comments immediately, It is suggested to approve all comments in your blog manually, because there are times that nasty comments may come in. Blogging comes with responsibility. It is your blog so be sure you control what’s in it.
In giving status in your Facebook, Instagram or Twitter, be careful on what you say because it might be used against you. Readers can always screen capture of what they saw. Readers can still prove their defamation case by having a screen capture of the things they saw. Be responsible on your own social media accounts.
As I always say, think before you click. I just hope that this simple reminder will help our readers be reminded on what they need to share.