In a decision made by the Supreme Court, the petition to call the Anti-Cybercrime Law (RA 10175) as unconstitutional was clarified today with mixed results. Among the ones that were declared constitutional was “internet libel“.
Also included int he decision to make constitutional the section on “aiding and abetting crimes” in relation to the following offenses — Illegal Access, Illegal Interception, Data Interference; System Interference; Misuse of Devices; Cyber-squatting; Computer-related Offenses such as Computer-related Forgery and Computer-related Identity Theft; and Cybersex.
However, other provisions of the Anti-Cybercrime Law were declared unconstitutional, including the take-down clause, the sending of unsolicited commercial messages (this means SMS spam is still considered legal) and some double-jeopardy clauses.
Likewise, the provisions on internet libel only covers the original author of a libelous posting or comment and does not include persons that shared, Liked or re-tweeted the same.
In September 2012, the Anti-Cybercrime Bill was passed into a law and signed by Pres. Noynoy Aquino.
The law was then challenged and a TRO was filed before the Supreme Court which has since held off making any decisions as far back as January 2013.
Since the Supreme Court has finally decided on this TRO, this means some parts of the RA 10175 is now enforceable and that includes internet libel.