In a small Filipino town two hundred kilometers away from the bustling city of Manila, a new law has been made that has declared gossiping to be officially be illegal, believe it or not. The goal of the new law in Binalonan is to prevent rumors from spreading as much as possible within the small Filipino community.
Talking badly about someone else in this town could have people picking up garbage as a punishment and way of holding people accountable for their actions, and most importantly, for their words.
Those who are caught for the first time are given a small fine of $3.8 dollars, as well as no choice but to pick up trash for a full three hours. Any repeat offender will be given a heftier fine of $20, and will have to serve their community with eight hours of trash collection.
Although authorities have not clearly defined what constitutes as gossiping, some examples that would be punished would be talking about other’s economic status or personal relationship. And although the law may seem rather strange, it’s being seriously enforced, and has been for the past two years.
According to the forty four year old mayor of the town, gossiping is a major waste of time, and imposing such laws will help improve the quality of life for the entire community. The mayor also has expressed that he does not see this as going against freedom of speech rights, but is one rather, that protects the people.