- Title: Hong Kong residents worry about online freedom of expression amid new law
- Date: 7th July 2020
- Summary: HONG KONG, CHINA (JULY 7, 2020) (REUTERS) VARIOUS OF TRAFFIC VARIOUS OF PEDESTRIANS WALKING ON FOOTBRIDGE VARIOUS OF HONG KONG RESIDENT YAN PAT-TO USING MOBILE PHONE (SOUNDBITE) (English) 45-YEAR-OLD HONG KONG RESIDENT AND PLAYWRIGHT, YAN PAT-TO, SAYING: "If the Hong Kong police or the Hong Kong government does not get the information from the Facebook company (officially), and they can also read the messages and then they may also have some other means to trace the users and then arrest them because they just speak anything that will make the government embarrassed. So I think the worry or the fear is already spread over Hong Kong about the cyber expression of the freedoms here." PEDESTRIANS WALKING VARIOUS OF HONG KONG RESIDENT MR. CHEUNG USING MOBILE PHONE (SOUNDBITE) (Cantonese) 45-YEAR-OLD HONG KONG RESIDENT WHO WORKS IN THE I.T. INDUSTRY, MR. CHEUNG, SAYING: "Actually, I believe the government will take further actions towards these social media platforms. I think I can foresee that we won't be able to use these applications in the future." VARIOUS OF PEDESTRIANS WALKING
- Embargoed: 21st July 2020 07:34
- Keywords: Beijing China Chinese Communist party Facebook Hong Kong Hong Kong protest Twitter Whatsapp national security law
- Location: HONG KONG, CHINA
- City: HONG KONG, CHINA
- Country: Hong Kong
- Topics: Conflicts/War/Peace,Civil Unrest
- Reuters ID: LVA001CLT6N9J
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: Hong Kong residents said on Tuesday (July 7) that they believe fear is spreading over freedom of expression online and expressed worries that some social media platforms may simply become unavailable amid a new sweeping national security law in the semi-autonomous city.
It comes as Facebook Inc, Google Inc and Twitter Inc said that they had suspended processing of government requests for user data in Hong Kong on Monday (July 6).
China's parliament passed the national security legislation last week, setting the stage for the most radical changes to the former British colony's way of life since it returned to Chinese rule 23 years ago.
Despite the tech companies' announcement, resident Yan Pat-to, 45, said he believes authorities will find other ways to access users' data.
"I think the worry or the fear is already spread over Hong Kong about the cyber expression of the freedoms here," he said.
Tech companies have long operated freely in Hong Kong, a regional financial hub where internet access has been unaffected by the firewall imposed in mainland China, which blocks Google, Twitter and Facebook.
In addition to the announcements by the U.S tech giants, TikTok, the short-form video app owned by China-based ByteDance, said it would pull out of the Hong Kong market within days.
(Production: Yoyo Chow)
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