MEDIA LITERACY COUNCIL: CALVIN CHENG’S COMMENTS INSENSITIVE, NOT HATE SPEECH

We would like to assure you that the Council has heard the feedback regarding our member Mr Calvin Cheng’s recent online comments, and has looked into the issue. Our Chairman Professor Tan Cheng Han’s statement is below:

“I would like to express my thanks to those who have given the Council their views on recent comments by Mr Calvin Cheng who is a member of the Council. I have taken some time to consider all points of view carefully as well as seek the views of several others to enable my view to be as fully informed as possible.

Taking everything into consideration, I am unable to conclude that what Mr Cheng said as a whole amounts to hate speech. In arriving at this view, I took into account the initial discussion thread, the medium of communication, and Mr Cheng’s subsequent blogpost where he elaborated on his views.

Although Mr Cheng did not in my view engage in hate speech, as a member of the Council he has to visibly uphold the values that the Council espouses. In this instance, his comments were insensitive and therefore inappropriate for a member of the MLC. I have spoken to Mr Cheng and counselled him that as a member of the Council he will be held to and judged by a higher standard compared to a private citizen.”

Media Literacy Council

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