The Thai Junta's Plan To Suppress Dissent Is Both Ambitious And Ridiculous

by
Lauren Burgoon
First the 'Hunger Games,' now Facebook - Thailand's junta is going after protesters in an odd way.

When you overthrow a government and the people you're now ruling with an iron fist aren't too happy, what's a military coup officer to do?

Quash dissent brewing on social media and start your own version of Facebook, of course. 

Thailand's junta is apparently sick and tired of Thais using Facebook to protest the bloodless coup. Instead of perhaps reconsidering their methods or talking with protesters, military rulers are taking the illogical path: get into the technology game by developing a "patriotic" alternative to Facebook.

"Thailand Social Network" certainly doesn't have the ring of Facebook, but it would be a way for junta leaders to monitor and steer conversation in the country, as well as exert control over social media. China, well known for suppressing Internet chatter, has its own social media sites for just that reason. 

The junta has already tried censorship through the traditional route of blocking Facebook, but Global Post reports that caused such an enormous outcry that military leaders had to appeal for calm on TV. 

This news comes on the heels of the Thai junta's threats to arrest anyone giving the "Hunger Games" salute as a form of silent protest. Just as it unfolded in the "Hunger Games" trilogy, leaders reacted to the salute's popularity with startling hysteria, much to the world's condemnation.