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Uri Party Pushing Internet Real Name Plan

Posted July. 06, 2005 00:37,   


The ruling Uri Party has decided to push ahead on the introduction of the Real Name System in which people have to use their real name when they post or upload their opinions on the Internet. Currently, there are no big obstacles in sight for the Real Name System to be put in place since the Ministry of Information and Communications has already announced that it would bring out measures for the implementation of the system by October this year, and the opposition Grand National Party (GNP) also principally supports the system.

According to recent surveys conducted by several portal sites, around 57 percent to 80 percent of Netizens (Internet users) favored the Real Name System.

Lawmaker Jung Se-gyun, the floor leader of the Uri Party, said at a policy-making conference for senior officials held in the National Assembly on July 5, “The Real Name System will be very effective to prevent violence and defamation in cyberspace that has increased 10 times over the past four years,” adding, “I will make all-out efforts in order to make the system an institution.”

Voices that the Real Name System is necessary have been raised over the years but the ruling party had taken a lukewarm attitude in implementing the system. A relevant official from the party said, “In fact, there have been concerns that the system could undermine or limit the actions of “potential supporters” given the fact that the power of the Internet played a great role for President Roh Moo-hyun to win the 2002 presidential election.”

However, the ruling Uri party has made a turnaround in their attitude toward the system as the Grand National Party outpaced the Uri party in terms of hits on its website after the April 30 by-election, and as the ruling party has come under fire from Internet users after the National Assembly failed to pass an amendment of the law on Koreans living abroad.

The criticism that the party is too influenced by the regular visitors of the party’s website also gives some ground for the Uri party lawmakers to support the system.

Lawmaker Kim Hee-jung, the chairman of the Digital Committee of the GNP said, “The GNP was damaged a lot by media manipulation on the Internet, such as the “Kim Dae-eup scandal.”

The Real Name System is an institution in that people can post or upload their writings only after their real name and residential number are confirmed.

In-Jik Cho cij1999@donga.com