EDITORIAL - Fight against cyberpornography needs community involvement

(The Freeman) - August 14, 2019 - 12:00am

The municipality of Cordova is offering a monetary reward for information about online sexual exploitation in the town as the local government intensifies its campaign against cyberpornography involving children.

A municipal council measure entitled Online Sexual Exploitation of Children (OSEC) Informants Incentive Ordinance gives P20,000 as financial incentives to “any person who shall provide information on OSEC within the municipality of Cordova, Cebu which after validation results in the apprehension and arrest of perpetrator/s.”

The ordinance --passed following the conviction of a 25-year-old mother who used her two daughters for online sex in exchange for money-- assures confidentiality of the identities of the informant, suspects, and victims. A copy of it has already been furnished to the Cebu Provincial Board.

It is good that the municipal government is dangling a reward for information leading to the arrest of those involved in cyberpornography in the town. This is something that would encourage the townsfolk to be more participative in the crusade.

Community participation is crucial against cyberpornography since the authorities cannot win the battle alone. They need the community to act because the involvement of everyone is very important in eradicating the problem.

For years, Cordova has been the center of cyberpornography in Cebu. And it’s very unfortunate that despite the government’s serious effort to get rid of the illegal activity, the town remains saddled with the problem.

One reason is the lack of community involvement in the campaign since there has never been any massive information drive launched by concerned government agencies regarding the serious effects of cyberpornography.

Another reason is the absence of an aggressive enforcement of the law. An honest-to-goodness approach by the authorities, especially the police, would have prevented the proliferation of such illegal business in the town and other areas in Cebu.

Of course, even without the financial reward, everyone in every barangay should be made aware of how cyberpornography is destroying the moral fabric of society, and that the serious participation of the public is needed to put an end to the problem.

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