Apple and other tech companies have registered for licenses in Indonesia that gives local authorities “flexible” and “rubbery” powers to censor content, reports the Financial Times (a subscription is required to read the article).
The FT says signing up to the new regulation means that local authorities can demand content be removed if they disturb “society” or “public order.” They can also demand access to the companies’ data.
A report from The Diplomat report says that last month, Indonesia’s Ministry of Communication and Information Technology announced a July 20 deadline for online platforms to register with the ministry or face consequences. This includes social media companies, search engines, messaging services, mobile applications, and nearly any other online service or application.
Writing for The Diplomat, Michael Caster says: This week, as the deadline approaches, Indonesia is poised to bring about one of the most repressive internet governance regimes in the world. Should Indonesia proceed, it could inspire a cascade of further repressive laws and policies in the region.
The registration order from KOMINFO is a step toward implementing Ministerial Regulation 5 (2020) and its amendment to Ministerial Regulation 10 (2021). They impose content moderation rules severely at odds with internationally recognized human rights norms on the freedom of expression and access to information online, as outlined in a detailed analysis that ARTICLE 19 conducted last year.