Cabinet passes draft amendments to three laws to combat fake news

  • Date: 2019-04-18
  • Source: Department of Information Services, Executive Yuan

The Cabinet on Thursday approved a series of draft amendments aimed at combating misinformation: Articles 251 and 313 of the Criminal Code of the Republic of China, drafted by the Ministry of Justice; Article 72 of the Criminal Code of the Armed Forces, drafted by the Ministry of National Defense; and several articles of the Referendum Act, drafted by the Central Election Commission. The proposals will be forwarded to the Legislature for deliberation.

Premier Su Tseng-chang said that the Executive Yuan has undertaken a sweeping review of the nation’s regulatory system in an effort to reduce the impact of fake news on Taiwan society and the public’s interests. This latest round of amendments, which follows an earlier round previously sent to the Legislature, revises the elements that constitute the crime of fake news dissemination and the penalties thereof, and adds a penalty enhancement for spreading fake news via mass communication tools. And to prevent false or misleading advertisements from undermining the integrity of national referendums, new provisions have been drawn up to require the disclosure of the publishers and financial sponsors of referendum advertisements, as well as penalties for violating those provisions.