Computer illiterate solons unmasked
by Erwin Rafael
The inclusion of blogs and social networking sites such as Facebook in the coverage of the proposed Right of Reply (RoR) bill (“Right of reply bill to cover bloggers, texters,” Inquirer, 5/31/09) betrays our lawmakers’ lack of technological savvy. If these “honorable” congressmen are Internet-literate at all, they would know that these websites have interactive features which already provide them a venue to post their replies in real time.
In the case of some websites which moderate or do not allow viewer comments, an “aggrieved” party can easily set up his own free blog or sign up for a social networking account so that he can post his rebuttals for the whole worldwide web to see. In the interactive world of “New Media,” demanding the right of reply is a redundancy.
Then again, we have lawmakers who are so technologically inept that they do not even know what a USB is (clue: it is not a software) and wonder how somebody who is not a computer technician can transfer videos from a camera to a computer (clue: ask your teenage children how to do it). I doubt if they can create their own Blogger or Facebook account. Heck, I don’t think they even know how to open their e-mail. I have been e-mailing a lot of lawmakers for the longest time on several issues and not once have I received a reply or even a confirmed read receipt from them.
I was also amused when I read the reply of the primary sponsor of the bill to Rep. Raymond Palatino. The reply—“Primarily, this bill refers to media publications and practitioners. I would think it will be defined more on the IRR”—sounds so unsure. Maybe lawmakers should start writing laws by themselves instead of letting their lowly paid staff do the work for them so that they can be sure about the contents of the bills they sponsor.
For anybody who feels aggrieved by this opinion, you are most welcome to exercise your right of reply on my blog: http://akosipaeng.blogspot.com.
OK, nakaka-once a month na ako. Career na ito. Hahaha