The Internet Service Providers' Association (ISPA) has recently announced at the 19th Annual UK Internet Industry Awards 203 colloquially dubbed the ISPAs.
The Internet Hero Award went to Marcus Hutchins for his role in finding the kill switch for the WannaCry ransomware that affected hundreds of thousands of computers earlier this year.
The less coveted, but widely contested award, the Internet Villain Award, went to President Erdogan of Turkey for his role in cracking down on online freedom of expression, including blocking Wikipedia and social media.
International over-the-top (OTT) content providers have been the bane of Thai regulator National Broadcasting and Telecommunications Commission's (NBTC) existence over the past few months.
The supposedly independent communications censor seems to be obsessed with finding ways to curb the likes of Facebook, Google, YouTube and Alibaba. In early April it boldly suggested imposing some kind of bandwidth fee on the consumption of OTT services,
requiring OTT players to have an operating licence to run a business in Thailand and even making them pay a value-added service tax for transactions by local merchants.
The head of the broadcasting committee, Natee Sukonrat, was quoted as saying users on social media who influence public opinion will have to be reined in.
What on the surface may seem to be an effort to create a more level playing field for the mobile players could also be seen as a thinly disguised attempt to give the regulator the power to more easily monitor and censor content the government is finding
difficult to regulate. The widely-criticised proposals are merely a backhanded move to bypass current legal processes and give the regulator the authority to demand the removal of content the military-run government considers illegal without waiting for
a court order, which the government has complained is time consuming.
Facebook and co would not play ball with Thai government requests and the government was forced drop the plan to register OTT players for tax purposes. However the government said that it would push ahead to replace several weak points in the censorship
process and come up with a revised proposal in 30 days.
And now the junta's ominously named National Reform Steering Assembly this month approved an 84-page social media censorship proposal, which would require such things as fingerprint and facial scanning just to top-up a prepaid plan, all in an effort to
be able to identify those posting content to OTT services. The push for fingerprint and facial recognition is in addition to existing requirements for all SIM users to register with their 13-digit national IDs.
Commentators say the stringent rules are similar to those in use in China and Iran.
New censorship rules issued by Bejing will prohibit portrayals of homosexuality, prostitution and drug addiction in online videos. The China Netcasting Services Association (CNSA) is targeting what they consider abnormal sexual activity.
The rules which were issued on Friday demand that online video platforms hire at least three professional censors. They were ordered to view entire programmes and take down any considered not sticking to the correct political and aesthetic standards.
Those who don't adhere to the new rules face being reported to the police for further investigation, according to Xhinua state news agency.