The UK Government has expanded the current anti-terrorism laws, The Counter-Terrorism and Border Security Act which was granted Royal Assent in February grants new powers to law enforcement in the UK in the alleged attempt to tackle terrorism.
The new legislation will make it illegal for anyone to view terrorist content, whether that be propaganda content or streaming content filmed by an alleged terrorist as we saw in the recent Christchurch Shooting.
Those caught watching material just once under the new laws will face up to 15 years in prison.
Additionally, another recent update to this Draconian legislation
Under Section 58(1) of the 2000 Act, it was already an offence to collect or make a record of information that is likely to be useful to a person committing or preparing an act of terrorism.
However, the government argued in the impact assessment for the 2019 Act that this “would not capture a situation where a person viewed such material over the internet without obtaining a permanent access to it”, such as by streaming or viewing it online.
The report stated that the existing laws did not capture the “nuance” in “changing methods” for distribution and consumption of terrorist content, so a new clause was added into the 2019 Act (PDF), making it an offence to “view (or otherwise access) any terrorist material online”.
So what this means is that anyone who just merely clicks on such content will be captured under this new legislation, regardless of one’s intent.
Exempt from these new laws are Government officials and authorised Journalists, which is no exemption at all in reality. What this new legislation effectively is attempting to do is ensure only authorised narratives can be circulated into the public domain.
Controlling the Narrative – Welcome to 1984.