The Lesotho Communications Authority (LCA) is urging social media influencers to comply with the Internet Broadcasting Rules in terms of sections 5(1)(c) and 38(2) of the Communications Act No. 4 of 2012.
LCA wants to regulate the content distributed over the internet by influencers and internet broadcasters. According to the press release, internet broadcasting is referred to as posts accessible to at least one hundred internet users in Lesotho. Hence, any influencer with more than one hundred followers in Lesotho is required to register with the LCA.
They are to comply with the broadcasting principles and standards under the Lesotho Telecommunications Authority Broadcasting Rules of 2004. This bill will not only affect influencers, but also the average social media user with as low as 100 followers. They need to request for LCA’s permission before they can post on either Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram.
This Bill is an attempt to regulate the social media space in Lesotho. It might as well hinder freedom of speech on social media and infringe on the rights of expression. When passed into law, the government will have the right to immediately take down any post that it does not agree with and carry out an investigation.
LCA has the right to investigate any influencer that is suspected of contravening the rules and may direct or facilitate the removal of such posts or content. It also appealed to the general public to submit comments on the proposed promulgation of the LCA Internet Broadcasting Rules of 2020.
To download the proposed amendment, clickSOCIAL MEDIA RULES 2020 DRAFT V3 250820.
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