Facebook issues 'legally required' disclaimer on States Times Review post

That was the first time the fake news law has been invoked on a social media platform.

Nyi Nyi Thet | November 30, 2019, 02:45 PM

Facebook has issued a correction notice for a States Times Review post.

It is a first for the social media giant.

The POFMA Office announced on Nov. 29 that the Minister for Home Affairs, K Shanmugam, has instructed it to issue a Targeted Correction Direction (TCD) to Facebook.

This makes it the first time the fake news law has been invoked on a social media platform.

The order comes after States Times Review founder Alex Tan decided not to comply with an earlier correction direction on a Facebook post that shared an article containing falsehoods.

States Times Review had claimed the people behind the NUSSU Facebook page had been arrested.


Here’s what a post with the correction direction looks like.

And here's what a TCD-issued correction looks like:

Screenshot from STR

"Facebook is legally required to tell you that the Singapore government says this post has false information."

Specifically this part.

If you press the "learn more" button, it directs you to Facebook's own disclaimer regarding Singapore's law against fake news.

If you click the Singapore government button, you get taken to the Factually page.

A Facebook spokesperson told CNA:

"As it is early days of the law coming into effect, we hope the Singapore Government’s assurances that it will not impact free expression will lead to a measured and transparent approach to implementation,”

A post earlier today by States Times Review had claimed that the "anti-PAP movement" had made huge gains because Facebook had openly defied the POFMA order.

Here's some background on the case.

Image from States Times Review and Gov.sg