The New Indian Express: Vietnam activists flock to ‘safe’ social media after cyber crackdown. “Tens of thousands of Vietnamese social media users are flocking to self-professed free speech platform Minds to avoid tough internet controls in a new cybersecurity law, activists and the company told AFP. The draconian law requires internet companies to scrub critical content and hand over user data if Vietnam’s Communist government demands it.” Are new social media platforms going to rise because of activism, social change, and repressive governments? That’s a different dynamic.
Reuters: Vietnam lawmakers approve cyber law clamping down on tech firms, dissent. “Vietnamese legislators approved a cybersecurity law on Tuesday that tightens control of the internet and global tech companies operating in the Communist-led country, raising fears of economic harm and a further crackdown on dissent.”
Reuters: Vietnam set to tighten clamps on Facebook and Google, threatening dissidents. “A struggle over internet laws in Vietnam is pitting a government keen on maintaining tight control against U.S. technology companies trying to fight off onerous new rules – with the country’s online dissidents among the biggest losers. The latest conflict centres on new cybersecurity legislation set for a vote by Vietnamese lawmakers later this month. It aims to impose new legal requirements on internet companies, and hardens policing of online dissent.”
VietnamNet: National land database to be completed in 2020. “The moving of land records from paper to digital format is part of the Viet Nam’s e-Government programme, signifying the Vietnamese Government’s latest attempt to catch up with the digital age and the advent of the fourth industrial revolution. The land database is not just an archive of information, it will also serve as a crucial tool for State management and satisfy the demands to access land information as well as land policies of all organisations, businesses and the public in a transparent, objective and convenient manner.”
Global Voices: Here’s What We Learned from the Online Database of Vietnam’s Political Prisoners. “Launched in January 2018, the Vietnamese Political Prisoner Database provides comprehensive and routinely updated information on the country’s political prisoners. Built by 88 Project, a group that works to extend assistance to political prisoners and their families, the website currently lists 113 activists who are in detention, 23 of whom are facing pre-trial investigation.”
Viet Nam News: Digital Vietnamese knowledge system launched. “All Vietnamese citizens can now participate in spreading knowledge conveniently and effectively thanks to the “Digital Vietnamese knowledge system” project – an ambitious Wikipedia-like portal tailored for Vietnamese, which was launched in Hà Nội on January 1.”
BBC News: Vietnam army hires censors to fight ‘internet chaos’. “The Vietnamese military has built up a force of more than 10,000 internet censors, according to local reports. A People’s Army leader is quoted as having said that the ‘cyber-troops’ had been tasked with tackling “wrongful views” and anti-state propaganda.”