Don't let tech turn us into quarrelsome people

I agree with Mrs Marietta Koh that no one should take matters into his own hands in admonishing another via social media ("Online vigilantism is unacceptable"; Nov 2), especially since social media has a wide reach to an unsuspecting audience, including the young and impressionable.

Technology has changed the way we live, work and play. Like everything else, it, too, has two sides to it.

It fills our social needs, but we should not use it to push "agendas" out of benevolent or malevolent motives.

Everyone has a right to privacy.

In a more connected but less related world, the distance between us has ironically widened. We have grown more circumspect in our dealings with others, even cynical. With the advent of social media and editing tools, seeing may no longer be believing.

Online vigilantism is no substitute for the rule of law. Civil society is not about who shouts the loudest. Free speech is not the same as loud or lout speech, or whoever is the most social media savvy.

We should not let technology turn us into quarrelsome people.

While I agree that societal norms should act as deterrents for anti-social acts, we should not turn citizens into self-appointed adjudicators.

It is time we revisited the kampung spirit. Let us remember to be kind to our fellow beings and make Singapore a refined society.

Lee Teck Chuan