Speaker Signs Online Safety Bill: Controversial Law Effective from Today

February 01, 2024

Speaker Mahinda Yapa Abeywardene has officially endorsed the Online Safety Bill, which will come into effect today (01). This move follows the bill's passage in Parliament last week, despite objections from numerous lawyers and activists who argue that it threatens internet freedom.

The Online Safety Bill, once effective, will introduce new regulations governing online content and behavior. Proponents of the bill argue that it is necessary to address issues such as cyberbullying, hate speech, and misinformation circulating on social media platforms. However, critics fear that the bill's broad scope and vague language could be used to suppress dissent and stifle freedom of expression.