Turkey's Political Leaders Reprise Roles In Spat Over Whether Or Not To Ban YouTube And Facebook

from the censorship-in-turkey,-part-II,-censor-harder dept

A few years ago, we wrote about attempts in Turkey to ban YouTube and some other social media sites under orders from Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan. We followed up some of those stories, in 2010, by noting that Turkey’s President, Abdullah Gul, had spoken out against those bans and was looking for ways to end them. So, we had to check the dates on new articles, when we saw late last week that Prime Minister Erdogan was, once again, talking about plans to ban YouTube and Facebook:

The Turkish prime minister, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, said Facebook and YouTube could be banned following local elections in March after leaked tapes of an alleged phone call between him and his son went viral, prompting calls for his resignation.

Erdogan claims social media sites have been abused by his political enemies, in particular his former ally US-based Turkish Muslim cleric Fethullah Gulen, who, he says, is behind a stream of “fabricated” audio recordings posted on the internet purportedly revealing corruption in his inner circle.

“We are determined on this subject. We will not leave this nation at the mercy of YouTube and Facebook,” Erdogan said in an interview late on Thursday with the Turkish broadcaster ATV. “We will take the necessary steps in the strongest way.”

And, within a day, there was President Gul saying that such bans were not on the table:

“Things like YouTube and Facebook are accepted all around the world, and their closure cannot be of discussion,” Mr. Gul said Friday in televised remarks. “Reversing on liberties is out of the question in Turkey. We always feel proud of reforms that enhance freedoms; they will always proceed further.”

Of course, just last month, it was Gul who approved new censorship laws in Turkey. While he did get the new law amended to address some of the criticism, he still approved the final law, which has serious problems. Either way, it appears that internet censorship remains a very popular tool for insecure Turkish politicians.

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Companies: facebook, twitter, youtube

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Comments on “Turkey's Political Leaders Reprise Roles In Spat Over Whether Or Not To Ban YouTube And Facebook”

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Anonymous Coward says:

Really, sounds like Turkish politicians need to take a page from US politicians and learn to be secure in their corruption. Sure every now and then your political enemies will sufficiently embarrass you and force you to make some trivial concessions, or make someone a scapegoat, but that’s just part of the game.

Otherwise people won’t get very worked up when you tell them their politicians are corrupt. That’s practically a given, politicians have been corrupt as long as there have been politics. Telling them to shut up on the other hand, now that pisses them off. Nobody likes to be told to shut up, it just pisses them off and makes them want to talk more about what you want them to shut up about.

Anonymous Coward says:

I support their banning of Facebook only.

Imagine all the tech retarded people you know who only got the internet themselves (maybe they had it at their parents but never cared) only when myspace/facebook started to be a thing and social media started to be proclaimed as something entirely new? Social media started when usenet was put together.

Anyway, there’s a lot of server software to make your own social media thing which is closed from the rest of the world. prism-break.org presents some of those, could be useful to those who really really like the kind of format facebook offers.

But be cautious, try not to visit prism-break.org with your real IP, let me show you why :

Oh nevermind, it seems that the FBI doesn’t keep tabs on people going to that site anymore, at least directly. In the past, one of my iptable lists, a moderately well known extreme quality bad guy blocking list would tell me EdgeCastFBI was trying to connect to me when visiting that site. EdgeCast is an innocent server renting company is my understanding, but the good guys over at nexus23 had identified a large range of those being rented by the FBI. I haven’t bought a subscription (they last one year, the one I run right now is from November) so maybe they still do but I don’t know, i’ll have to pay them their 20 euros or so, stupid Canadian money, why are you taking a little plunge again….

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