“Police report” button to tackle offensive speech

“Police report” button to tackle offensive speech

Amos Yee LKY fingersBy Simon Vincent

There is nothing more terrible than surfing the internet and coming across offensive material.

Till today, I am traumatised for watching 2 Girls, 1 Cup. I had initially thought it was a video of two thirsty women coming together in a spirit of sisterhood to share a cup of water. I wish I hadn’t been so wrong.

I have since had nightmares about this video every night, and in the interest of being decent, I shall not describe the details of my torturous visions.

Yet nothing, not even the two harlots in that abominable video, could have prepared me for Amos Yee. His Lee Kuan Yew is Finally Dead video is true scat! It is one thing for my own sensibilities to be offended, but for Lee Kuan Yew to be offended, upon his death, and at the expense of Jesus Christ is just unacceptable!

After coming across the video on social media, clicking on it, and watching it for eight-and-a-half minutes, I had no choice but to write a police report and detail my grief. It was a truly traumatic experience, one that I had not asked for.

I am happy to know that Amos Yee is now facing the music. As his stubborn behaviour shows, the offensive people of this world will never repent, unless we come up with more efficient ways to keep them in check.

Towards this end, I have a modest proposal to make: Let us mandate that every article, video, and picture posted online shall henceforth be paired with a “police report” button at the bottom.

When you come across something offensive, all you have to do is click this button, and the Police will immediately be notified of your distress.

While there currently is an Electronic Police Centre to lodge police reports, it is reserved only for non-emergencies, which, according to an officer I spoke to, include those reports made against Amos. Nothing could be further from the truth. The insult against Lee Kuan Yew and Jesus was an emergency that had to be dealt with swiftly. The plague of anti-Lee Kuan Yew sentiment had to be stopped at its source before it infected other Singaporeans.

While the Police have dealt with Amos effectively this time, we cannot be certain that they will always be diligent, especially when their work is spread across other matters. In this age of social media, we need a special Internet Police Brigade — trained in the art of detecting and eliminating offensive speech as quickly as it can be posted.

I understand that a number of people will initially abuse the button function, to the detriment of police officers. Alas, a nihilistic bent is characteristic of the internet generation. Nevertheless, as long as the Police take swift action against offenders who misuse the button, good speech will slowly but surely be cultivated.

And for the true offenders who seek to cause discord in Singapore by putting up subversive material, let them always know that the Police are only a button click away.

The best thing about this new state of order is that everyone will be careful about what they put up on the web. The cancer of offensive speech will finally be eradicated from Singapore.

I can already envision a brighter tomorrow where no man or woman is ever tormented by nightmares of women engaging in scatalogical fetishes and of beloved politicians – dead or alive – being insulted.

Unfortunately, despite its recent crowdfunding effort, The Online Citizen still lacks the funds to be able to create a prototype for my button. Nevertheless, I shall lead by example and at least provide a link to the as-yet unimproved Electronic Police Centre (I am still waiting for the Police to respond to my suggestion for an Internet Police Brigade).

Editor’s note: Yes, this is satire. We have no reason to believe that the writer made a police report against Amos Yee or suggested anything to the police. But one statement is true – TOC is still in need of funding despite our recent successful crowd-funding effort. Help us by signing up as a subscriber, donating to us or supporting us in other ways.

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