Saudi Arabia postpones public flogging of Raif Badawi:
The blogger and activist, who founded the now-closed online forum Liberal Saudi Network, was due to receive 50 lashes in public after Friday prayers. Last May he was sentenced to 10 years in prison and 1,000 lashes for "Insulting Islam" And disobedience. Ref. Source 4
Can you imagine if the government took this approach to a blog what they would do to you if you went on something more influential like public television?
Targeting blogs is one thing but there are also large websites that are setup to say a few thing that are false. Passing on falsified information to an unsuspecting viewership is very irresponsible and can insight people into various actions depending on the popularity of the site. Those that create such websites should face penalties.
Two things that have to be considered is the local laws and the location of the content. For instance is the content being served out of a country that has no specific laws about what you can publish? Or the opposite, if they do have laws then they can shut your site off even though they may not be able to prosecute you because of your location.
I would have to say most governments use social media and blog sites to watch for future criminals. Is it right? It does work though in that in Canada some people who had planned acts of destruction to public property were stopped a head of time. It was due to internet monitoring that they were stopped.
Also think if a hate group set up and were blogging about gay bashing should any one be aloud to see that blog report and these people taken into custody for plotting such an action?
Thought police coming soon.
Like any other public forum you can't expect to use a public media platform to just say anything you want without consequences - its very naive to think you could.
Look at it this way. If you knew that your blog was specifically being monitored by watchers (Offical and otherwise) will you be more careful what you post up? I bet you would and if you do have a blog do know that you are being watched!
The main thing here is enforcement. Its difficult to track the real owner or writer of content when there are offshore hosts, anonymous email, disposable email and proxies. Its only if the person is open about where, what and why they are saying their views online can something be done about it.