Turkish President Uses Twitter To Complain About His Own Gov't's Censorship Of Google

from the follow-that? dept

We’ve noted that Turkey has repeatedly banned YouTube, and more recently a bunch of other Google properties. The YouTube ban came from the courts. It’s still not clear what resulted in the wider Google blocks. A bunch of reporters have protested the censorship, noting how bad it makes Turkey look. And, apparently, they have support from Turkey’s President. Various news publications are reporting that Turkish President Abdullah Gul used Twitter to say that he doesn’t agree with the bans and has asked officials to look for ways to get rid of them.

None of the press reports I can find link to the Twitter account, but I’m assuming (risky?) that these news publications (including The Guardian (above), the Associated Press and Reuters) actually confirmed that the account is real. According to Reuters, in a series of Tweets, Gul said:

“I know there are lots of complaints about bans on YouTube and Google.”

“I am definitely against them being closed down. I have ordered responsible institutions for a solution. I asked for a change in regulations on merit.”

What’s next? Whoever blocked Google will now block Twitter as well?

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Companies: google, twitter, youtube

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Comments on “Turkish President Uses Twitter To Complain About His Own Gov't's Censorship Of Google”

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Sinan Unur (profile) says:

Turkish President on Twitter

You can find his tweets at http://twitter.com/cbabdullahgul

He said:

“Türkiye’nin Youtube’u yasaklayan, Google’a erişimi engelleyen ülke kategorisinde olmasını tasvip etmem. Bu konuda yasal yollar bulunmalı.”

My translation:

I do not approve of Turkey being in the same category as other countries banning Youtube and preventing access to Google. Regarding this, legal avenues must be found.

The roots of these issues go back to the mid 90s when a whole bunch of new broadcast regulations were written. I have a little inside knowledge of the process, and it wasn’t pretty. The current government, despite whatever other faults it might have, does not have a lot to do with how you can get a court order banning web sites for “anti-Turkish” content.

Censorship in Turkey was not born yesterday.

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