But local bloggers know that the state has ample means of oppression already:
In due course, another circular will specify fines that may be levied for violations of the new decree. However, if past is precedent, Decree 72 won’t make much difference. Hanoi already has plenty of punishments it can mete out to dissident bloggers when it chooses.
Often it has stooped to prosecuting on trumped up charges of tax evasion when it doesn’t want to deploy heavier weaponry. On one pretext or another, by RSF’s count, it has put 35 online critics behind bars already this year. That explains why the new decree has triggered relatively few alarms in the Vietnamese blogosphere; at worst it seems no more threatening than the rest of Hanoi’s arsenal of thought repression.