Anti-Porn Bill Won’t Focus on Public Conduct

Anti-Porn Bill Won’t Focus on Public Conduct
Michael Hayes
INDONESIA – Pornographic materials are now the focus of the latest incarnation of Indonesia’s anti-pornography bill.

Balkan Kaplale, chairman of the House committee responsible for working on the bill, told the Jakarta Post that members of the committee, though split on the public conduct issue, agreed the government should do something to slow the distribution of pornography.

An earlier version of the bill, which was originally drafted in 1999, went further than simply banning pornography. Under that version, public kissing, the display of women’s “sensual body parts” and exhibition of “erotic artworks” were all acts punishable by up to 10 years in prison and fines as high as $100,000 (about R700,000). The earlier version, which was based on Sharia law, sparked protests from women in the country of 190 million Muslims.

The new bill will focus on regulating and curbing the flow of pornographic materials. Films, pictures and other mass-media methods of distribution will be the target of the new bill. However, there is no word yet on what will qualify as pornographic.