Manila archdiocese disowns statement on ‘anti-cybercrime law’

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MANILA, Oct. 4, 2012— Amid the raging protest over the anti-cybercrime law, Manila Archbishop Luis Antonio Tagle appears to have been victimized by misinformation using the social media.

As the controversial Cybercrime Prevention Act took effect Wednesday, a statement using the archbishop’s name supposedly favoring the measure started circulating on the Internet.

The statement was first posted around 6 p.m. yesterday over Facebook using the account “Archbishop Luis Antonio Gokim Tagle, D.D., STD”.

Archbishop Luis Antonio Tagle

“Please be informed that Manila Archbishop Luis Antonio Tagle does not have an FB account,” according to Manila archdiocese communications director Peachy Yamsuan.

“He has a fan page administered by JesCom (Jesuit Communications). (But) he has not issued any official statement on the cyber crime law,” she added in text message to reporters.

The archbishop’s official Facebook fan page, which already has around 103,000 “likes”, is “Bishop Luis Antonio G. Tagle” and can be accessed through www.facebook.com/ArchbishopTagle.

Tagle’s official statements are also posted at the Manila archdiocese’s website, www.rcam.org

The anti-cybercrime law has been the subject of criticisms for including libel as among punishable crimes and other provisions perceived to be tantamount to prior restraint.

Petitioners against the measure, aimed at punishing crimes committed on the internet, warned of the threat to freedom of expression the new law poses.  [RL/CBCPNews]

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