Vietnam wants US connections to prevent anti-gov't content on the internet

By Ngoc Tuyen   March 22, 2017 | 08:57 pm GMT+7

A spate of toxic Facebook and YouTube posts have prompted the information minister to ask the U.S. Ambassador to step in.

The Minister of Information and Communications has asked U.S. Ambassador to Vietnam Ted Osius to encourage U.S. enterprises operating in Vietnam to build stronger connections with local authorities in a bid to prevent anti-government information on Facebook and Google.

At a meeting with Osius on Wednesday, Minister Truong Minh Tuan highlighted a case related to YouTube, in which more than 8,000 videos containing wrongful content and distorted historical facts about Vietnam were found.

These videos featured advertisements for several major Vietnamese brands.

The companies in question said they did not control where there ads appear and will cancel their contracts if YouTube does not deal with the situation.

Tuan said the Vietnamese government will not limit the operation of Google or YouTube, but will act on any negative content they publish.

Osius said he agreed with the suggestion, but urged Vietnam to make more efforts to prevent intellectual property violations on the internet.

Nearly 49 million people in Vietnam, or more than half of the country’s population, are online. A Nielsen survey released last September found that 92 percent of them watch online videos at least once a week, and 64 percent are daily viewers.

YouTube and Facebook account for two-thirds of the digital media market share in Vietnam, according to Nguyen Khoa Hong Thanh, operations director at digital marketing agency Isobar Vietnam.

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