Talk Ain't Cheap: This Town in the Philippines Has Made Gossip Illegal

This town in the Philippines has passed a law for talking trash, the punishment for which is actually picking up literal trash.

While exploring rumors and gossiping may be a daily activity for some(we're looking at you, aunties wearing sport shoes but not jogging in the park!), a town in Philippines has decided to do away with the tittle-tattle all together.

Binalonan, a town located about three hours away from the capital city of Manila, has enforced strict penalties for people caught gossiping. Gossip, or “chismis” as it is known in the Philippines, is now illegal.

The law was passed by Binaloan mayor, Ramon Guico who said that rumors were spread most often in the summer when people chatted under trees and discussed the affairs and finances of others.

“There are many types of gossip, but most gossip cases here is about conflict around property, money, relationships and the like,” Guico told the Guardian.

The punishment for the crime of trash-talk? Picking up actual trash.

For a first-time offender, the fine is 200 pesos, or 725 INR, and three hours of community service, picking up rubbish. Repeating this crime subjects you to a fine of 1,357 and eight hours of community service. The mayor also confirmed that some residents had already been caught and punished under the new law and it had succeeded in reducing local disputes

This ban isn't unique to just Binaloan, though. After being imposed on the municipality of Binalonan, it has been extended to seven villages in the district.

As part of his plan to keep Binalonan civilised, the mayor has also outlawed karaoke after 10pm.

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