Verité survey finds 56% fear ‘Online Safety Bill’ will restrict Social Media freedom
Colombo (LNW): In a survey conducted by Verité Research, 34 per cent of respondents were aware of the government’s introduction of the Online Safety Bill to regulate behaviour on social media.
Among those familiar with the bill, 56 per cent expressed concerns that it would restrict the freedom of using social media, while 25 per cent believed it would have no significant impact, and 19 per cent thought it would help reduce misuse.
The Online Safety Bill, published in the government gazette on September 18 and presented to Parliament on October 3, aims to establish an Online Safety Commission with defined powers and functions.
However, the Supreme Court has identified 31 clauses requiring amendment for it to pass with a simple majority, as opposed to the current requirement of a special two-thirds majority in Parliament.
Conducted in October 2023, the survey gathered responses from 1,029 Sri Lankan adults in a nationally representative sample, with a maximum error margin of ±3% at a 95% confidence interval.
Part of the Syndicated Surveys by Verité Research, the poll was carried out in collaboration with Vanguard Survey (Pvt) Ltd.
Verité Research welcomes other organisations to utilise this polling instrument to gauge public sentiments in Sri Lanka.