News / Science & Technology

Bribespot: Fighting Corruption in Thailand One Click at a Time

Bribespot: Fighting Corruption in Thailand One Click at a Timei
X
September 12, 2013 4:28 PM
Reporting corruption, at least unofficially, in Thailand is becoming easier with a new Thai version of an international smartphone application. VOA Correspondent Steve Herman has details from Bangkok.
— Reporting corruption, at least unofficially, in Thailand is becoming easier with a new Thai version of an international smartphone application.
 
As it is in many developing countries, bribery is ubiquitous in Thailand.  A Transparency International survey found that one-fourth of those in the country acknowledged making a payoff at least once a year.
 
But the government's Public Sector Anti-Corruption Commission (PACC) said it only received about 4,000 complaints annually through its telephone hotline, Website and walk-in center.
 
Now people in Thailand have a more convenient way to informally report corruption.

The local version of Bribespot, created by a Lithuanian living in Germany, allows anyone with access to a smartphone or computer to pinpoint where, to whom and how much they paid a bribe. The reports are then published and mapped online.
 
PACC deputy secretary general Prayong Preeyachitt sees such innovations as Blogspot as helping to combat corruption.

“It is a good use of technology to help solve the corruption problem. But I am worried about our office getting overwhelmed by the number of claims it could generate. However the application is very useful for our job and the prime minister endorses this project,” he said.
 
Commission officials said they were willing to disseminate information through their nine regional offices to let the public know about this new method of detailing corruption.
 
"I had to pay a policeman because he said my vehicle's number plate was too dirty to read clearly. This application may be very useful because we can be anonymous and we do not know to whom we should report such incidents," said one office worker.

"I have already heard about this application. I think it will be useful," said one young woman.

"Social networks can be valuable for this problem. But this application needs more functions to provide sufficient evidence, such as audio or a video clip," a salesman said.
 
But some, including a local newspaper, are skeptical about Bribespot's potential effectiveness here, saying while graft is talked about a lot in Thailand, it is generally tolerated by the public. Such payments result in reduced fines from police officers and faster service at government offices.

Steve Herman

A veteran journalist, Steven L Herman is the Voice of America Asia correspondent.

You May Like

Uganda Court Annuls Anti-Gay Law

Court says law was passed in parliament without enough members present for a full quorum More

Video Thailand Makes Efforts to Improve Conditions for Migrant Laborers

In Thailand, its not uncommon for parents to bring their children to work; one company, in-collaboration with other organizations, address safety concerns More

In Indonesia, Jihad Video Raises Concern

Video calls on Indonesians to join Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, ISIL More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
In Thailand, Some Efforts to Improve Conditions For Migrant Laborersi
X
Steve Herman
August 01, 2014 6:22 PM
Thailand has been facing increasing international scrutiny as a hub of human trafficking and slave labor. Some of the kingdom’s companies are striving to improve working conditions, especially for the millions of migrant laborers from surrounding countries. VOA Correspondent Steve Herman in Bangkok takes a look at one initiative for children at construction sites
Video

Video In Thailand, Some Efforts to Improve Conditions For Migrant Laborers

Thailand has been facing increasing international scrutiny as a hub of human trafficking and slave labor. Some of the kingdom’s companies are striving to improve working conditions, especially for the millions of migrant laborers from surrounding countries. VOA Correspondent Steve Herman in Bangkok takes a look at one initiative for children at construction sites
Video

Video Public Raises its Voice on Power Plant Pollution

In the United States, proposed rules to cut pollution from the nation’s 600 coal-fired power plants are generating a heated debate. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, charged with writing and implementing the plan, has already received 300,000 written comments. As VOA’s Rosanne Skirble reports, another 1,600 people are lining up this week at EPA headquarters and at satellite offices around the country to give their testimony in person.
Video

Video Information War Rages Alongside Real One in Ukraine

The downing of the Malaysian airliner two weeks ago, and allegations that Russians are shelling Ukrainian troops across the border, have moved the information war swirling around the Ukrainian conflict to a new level. VOA's Al Pessin reports from Kyiv.
Video

Video When Fighting Eases, Gazans Line Up at Bakeries

When there is a lull in the conflict in Gaza, residents who have been hunkered down in their apartments rush out to stock up on food and other necessities. Probably the most important destination is the local bakery. VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from Gaza City.
Video

Video China Investigates Powerful Former Security Chief

The public in China is welcoming the Communist Party's decision to investigate one of the country's once most powerful politicians, former domestic security chief Zhou Yongkang. Analysts say the move by President Xi Jinping is not only an effort to win more support for the party, but an essential step to furthering much needed economic reforms and removing those who would stand in the way of change. VOA's Bill Ide has more from Beijing.
Video

Video US-Funded Program Offers Honduran Children Alternative to Illegal Immigration

President Obama and Central American leaders recently agreed to come up with a plan to address poverty and crime in the region that is fueling the surge of young migrants trying to illegally enter the United States. VOA’s Brian Padden looks at one such program in Honduras - funded in part by the United States - which gives street kids not only food and safety but a chance for a better life without, crossing the border.
Video

Video 'Fab Lab' Igniting Revolution in Kenya

The University of Nairobi’s Science and Technology Park is banking on 3-D prototyping to spark a manufacturing revolution in the country. Lenny Ruvaga has more for from Nairobi's so-called “FabLab” for VOA.
Video

Video Immigrant Influx on Texas Border Heats Up Political Debate

Immigrants from Central America continue to cross the U.S.-Mexico border in south Texas, seeking asylum in the United States, as officials grapple with ways to deal with the problem and provide shelter for thousands of minors among the illegal border crossers. As VOA's Greg Flakus reports from Houston, the issue is complicated by internal U.S. politics and U.S. relations with the troubled nations that immigrants are fleeing.

AppleAndroid