Social Media

Thai govt ultimatum has passed, but Facebook is reportedly not backing down

Thailand's Internet Service Provider Association (Tispa), under pressure from the government to block access to Facebook, said the social media giant will not remove illicit content until it receives proper court warrants, local media reported.

The government had given Facebook a Tuesday 10 a.m. local time deadline to remove the content or face legal action, the Bangkok Post reported Tuesday.

The report added that Tispa and internet gateway providers sent an email to the managing director of Facebook Thailand on Friday with the request and reportedly said 131 URLs had been deemed inappropriate have yet to be removed.

After the ultimatum passed, Tispa president Morakot Kulthamyothin told Khaosod English that Facebook stands by its policy.

"They [Facebook] said the request to block 131 URLs lacked court orders in the documents, and they said that if the documents are completed, they will proceed with the requests," she told the Thai media.

A Facebook spokesperson told CNBC that the company will review requests such as that by the Thai government and remove content that violates the law.

"When governments believe that something on the Internet violates their laws, they may contact companies like Facebook and ask us to restrict access to that content. When we receive such a request, we review it to determine if it puts us on notice of unlawful content. If we determine that it does, then we make it unavailable in the relevant country or territory and notify people who try to access it why it is restricted."

Last week, Reuters reported that Thailand's National Broadcasting and Telecommunications Commission said Facebook had failed to remove 131 of 309 web addresses on the platform that were deemed a threat to national security or violated "lese majeste" laws that make it a crime to defame, insult or threaten the king, queen heir to the throne or regent.

Read the full Bangkok Post report about Facebook's shutdown threat in Thailand here

Read the full story by Khaosod English here