Free speech is a complex issue. Although it gives voice to the masses which would have been silenced under authoritative rule, there are certain drawbacks as well. This is as to, what about the right of speech of a violent and extremist association or entity? Do they have a similar right to speech as the rest of the people or should their freedom to express themselves freely be curtailed?
Myanmar came under military rule in 2021 again. The country which has a past of military governance, came under the hands of the military junta again.
However, this time they are looking to learn from their past mistakes. No, our hint is not towards a better and a more efficient governance, but towards the branding of the military junta. The military has realized that no long term governance can be achieved without the aid of the people.
Hence, to improve their perception they are resorting to digital branding through the launch of apps on Playstore as well as Apple Store under the name MRTV. They have also registered a domain name to support their branding endeavor: MRTVmedia.com.
NGO groups have started raising their voice against this Online push of the Myanmar authority. All of the apps belonging to the military have several serious privacy violating features. The apps can record audio, take pictures, videos, as well as get the precise GPS location of the user.
NGOs are now asking as to why organizations like these are given a medium to propagate their false narrations through the deployment of platforms like Apple Store and Playbook.
The military government has also been accused of crimes against the Rohingya residents of their country. The pushing of Rohingya from their homeland, led to a refugee crisis in neighboring countries of Myanmar as well.
The tricky free speech right shows its complexity here. Does this military government be given equal rights to speech as others and be allowed to spread hate, falseness and propaganda?