Tanzania targets bloggers, websites in new online media regulation
Tanzania is introducing a bill that includes strict regulations for bloggers, social media users and other online content publishers.
The Electronic and Postal Communications (Online Content) Regulations 2017 has already been passed by parliament and will be enforced by the Tanzania Communications Regulatory Authority (TCRA) once it’s approved by the country’s information minister.
Fines, jail terms for violations
The new regulations state that online content producers – including bloggers and social media users – will be held accountable for anything they publish that is deemed: “indecent, obscene, hate speech, extreme violence or material that will offend or incite others, cause annoyance, threaten harm or evil, encourage or incite crime, or lead to public disorder.”
The bill recommends that offenders are fined five million Tanzania Shillings ($2,300) and/or jailed for a minimum of 12 months.
The regulations also require the owners of online platforms to apply for registration from TCRA, allowing them to hold individuals responsible. Meanwhile, individual bloggers and social media users will be held accountable for everything they publish and share online.