by Mike Masnick
Tue, May 26th 2009 12:19am
There were a bunch of stories this weekend talking about how Facebook appeared to be blocked in Iran, with many assuming that it was due to upcoming elections, where some reformist candidates have been using the social networking site to build support. Current President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad is apparently claiming that he has nothing to do with it, and that he "believe[s] in maximum freedom of expression," and that he'll "look into" the block. Meanwhile, others are claiming the ban is for moral, rather than political reasons. The reality is probably a bit of both -- with the government being able to use the cover of "morality" to block an effective organizing technique for an opposition candidate. Either way, this action only seems to be calling more attention to the opposition candidate, so if the goal was to stifle his campaign, it might just have backfired.
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