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“Tokyo politicians out to delete chunks of the Internet” via CNN International

While domestic and international organizations busy themselves getting aid to the people worst hit by the March 11 disasters, parts of the Japanese government, it seems, are more concerned with playing King Canute online.

The Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications yesterday issued a decree from its seat of power in central Tokyo telling a collection of Internet bodies to delete “false rumors” about the aftermath of the earthquake, tsunami and nuclear incident.

Speaking directly to four of the largest groups overseeing how the ‘net is regulated in Japan, the government department asked them to step in and remove the untruths from websites, chat boards and email (really).

Without giving specifics, it presumably seeks to address rising public concern about radiation leaks from Fukushima and the knock-on effect on business confidence.

Although it’s unlikely that the Ministry is particularly worried about the rumors, both printed and online, that all manner of non-Japanese troublemakers are making merry in the northeast, at least it has included a caveat about “concern for freedom of expression” in the diktat. We thank you.

“Tokyo politicians out to delete chunks of the Internet”

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