WATCH: Internet censorship Bill now law

President Cyril Ramaphosa has signed the controversial Film and Publications Amendment Bill into law. Courtesy #DStv403

JOHANNESBURG - President Cyril Ramaphosa has signed the controversial Film and Publications Amendment Bill into law. 

The bill includes harsher rules to protect children from disturbing harmful content and the regulation of online distribution of content such as films and games. 

However, critics of the internet censorship bill believe the law is badly written and has the potential to be abused. 

"One of the biggest criticisms of the bill is, in terms of the Act and this remains, you have to classify content before you publish it. It has to be classified according to age, whether it will be violent but that was easy when it was pertaining to videos.

"They would go to the Film & Publications board before you could put that video to market or distribute it in any commercial way. But now the way we publish content is dramatically", said Social Media Law Expert Sarah Hoffman.

READ: Africa's worst new Internet Censorship Law

Hoffman said one of the biggest benefits of the bill is the revenge pornography provision.

"The underlying intention of the bill is greater awareness of the nature of content before it is published. One of the benefits of the bill is the revenge pornography provision," Hoffman.

"Now in terms of the Act, any intentional distribution of private content without the consent of the person depicted in the content is actually a criminal offence."

Source
eNCA