In the afternoon of November 24th, the National Assembly passed a resolution 55/2017/QH14 on interrogation, which called for the Government and the Ministry of Information and Communications to quickly develop and implement the Code of Conduct on the Social Media for platform providers and users in Vietnam. This is a remarkable output for advocacy efforts of Vietnam Program for Internet & Society in colloration with Ministry of Information & Communications and other parters to promote the development of such Code of conduct in 2017.
The resolution stated that "To build and implement a Code of conduct for social service providers and users in Vietnam, aim to build a healthy and safe internet environment in Viet Nam". In addition, the Ministry of Information and Communication needs to develop a system of mechanism to gather, manage and deal with illegal information broadcasted by service providers; coordinate with other ministries in strictly handling illegal behaviors and hate speech on social media.
Therefore, the essential task currently is to build, fine-tune the content of the Code and apply it to society. The content of the code of conduct on the social media should be consistent with the life of the civillains and clearly define the responsibility of the social networking platform providers, users and government agencies in charge. General terms and slogans only are not effective.
The content of the code of conduct is proposed by VPIS and discussed for the first time at the symposium "Hate speech and Solutions toward a Safe and Sustainable social media environment"on 12/4/2017, co-oganized by VPIS and Authority of Broadcasting and Electronic Information. The workshop was the first open forum to address the issue of "hate speech on social media" to gain positive recommendations from policy makers, experts, lawyers, users and organizations interested in order to make possible solutions for a safe and transparent Internet environment.
Symposium "Hate speech and solutions towards a safe & sustainable online social media enviroment" on April 12th initially discussed and proposed a Code of Conduct on Social media in Vietnam
Aiming to bridge the communication between stakeholders to promote the “Code of Conduct on Social Media", VPIS has continuously carried out social surveys on the practice of "fake news, hate news" on the social network, consulted local and international experts’s advices to improve the content of the code. From there, VPIS synthesized and recommended the content of the Code in meetings with representatives of Authority of Broadcasting and Electronic Information. In addition, the Program cooperates closely with the The National Assembly Office, especially the Librarian of Congress, to draft multidimensional documents and address the issue to the members of the National Assembly for consideration.
Dr. Pham Hai Chung, the Co-chair of Internet and Media, VPIS presented the result of online survey on hate speech in Vietnam
Next year, based on the Resolution of the National Assembly, Vietnam Program for Internet and Society (VPIS) plans to further promote the development of the Code of Conduct on social media with the goal to create a better Internet environment in Vietnam.
Based on the Code of Conduct adopted by the European Commission in 2016, VPIS’s Code of Conduct has 8 commitments with the some key content such as: IT companies will be one of the leaders in the fight against the spread of hate speech on Internet; such companies will build a process of censoring illegal hate speech within 24 hours or may disable access right to such content if necessary. Some following key commitements in the Code of Conduct:
Public Commitments: Facebook takes the lead on countering the spread of hate speech online, have agreed with the Vietnam Authority on a code of conduct setting the following public commitments
Coordinate with Vietnam Authority:
Facebook provides information on the procedures for submitting notices, with a view to improving the speed and effectiveness of communication between FB and Vietnam authorities on notifications and on disabling access to or removal of hate speech online. The information is to be channeled through contact points designated by FB and the Vietnam Authority.
Remove or disable access within 24 hours:
FB to review notifications for removal of hate speech in less than 24 hours and remove or disable access to such content
Education for FB users
FB to educate and raise awareness with their users about the types of content not permitted under their rules and community guidelines. The notification system could be used as a tool to do this.
FB Community Policy and Vietnamese laws:
Upon receipt of a valid removal notification, FB to review such requests against based on both FB community guidelines and Vietnamese laws and regulations
Improve capability for FB’s content management staff:
FB to provide regular training to their staff on current social issues in Vietnam that can help to understand the need of the society for further improvement on hate speech management
FB to intensify cooperation with other platforms and social media companies to enhance best practice sharing to stop spreading hate speech
FB and Vietnam Authority to review the progress on this issue quarterly