People In Turkey Quite Angry Over Google Blockade; While Bureaucrats Defend Policy

from the turkish-delight dept

We've written a few times about Turkey's odd thinking on blocking access to large parts of Google, in part over some YouTube videos and partly over a tax dispute. We also noted that Turkey's own President indicated he was upset about the block and would look to get it lifted. The BBC has a much more detailed article on the situation, where it explains that the laws for blocking such websites are so convoluted and unclear, that it's often not even clear who decided to ban what and for what reason. For example, no one's even sure why Google was really banned this time around, as there are conflicted explanations. But the key point is summarized in these paragraphs:
There are two different Turkeys talking here.

There is Istanbul, buzzing with entrepreneurial activity and cultural life, where people aspire to European levels of wealth and freedom.

And there is the capital Ankara, a city of bureaucrats, the centre of military and political power. Ankara is where nearly all the internet restrictions emanate.
The article highlights journalists and businesses who are greatly harmed by the blocks, including one company who had signed up to use Google's infrastructure for their email... and now can't access their own email accounts. The reporter then goes to talk to the head of the "Ataturk Thought Association" (how's that for an Orwellian name?), which is apparently responsible for many of the blocks, as it seeks to block access to any video that it feels insults Turkey's founding father, Ataturk. She doesn't seem to care if anyone or any business is inconvenienced. To her, blocking access to such videos is much more important:
"For us Ataturk is a symbol of democracy and women's emancipation", she says. "This is about respect for him. I am not bothered by the impact of the court decision."
Of course, as part of democracy and women's emancipation, doesn't it help to have widespread access to tools of communication... like YouTube?

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  • This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
    Anonymous Coward, 6 Jul 2010 @ 2:48am

    I've decided to use iMacros to post things.

    So there may be some duplicates of my postings because of moderators' inability to use Wordpress.

    FYI: Wordpress a relatively easy program that allows you to delete duplicate items if the moderator decides to do so. I definitely recommend setting it up yourself to see how easy it is to delete duplicate entries.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 6 Jul 2010 @ 3:48am


      This comment mystifies me? I'm so interested in why someone would bother to post something on how they will post.

      I'm also confused why anyone needs a tool to post? I just hit the reply button and it pops right up in my browser. I guess you are some sort of power poster looking to add your comments all over the internet. But something about the format of this site is blocking your power posting? So you'll have to do a different tool.

      Arrggghhh, I'm completely distracted from Turkey's monopolization of information.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • icon
        Berenerd (profile), 6 Jul 2010 @ 5:53am

        Re: Re: Robo posting

        There are people who get paid to make posts all over the internet to try and spread the word about different things such as goods and pay sites. Most of it is done via macro'ed posts. Post that automatically post something similar but then turns you to the site that it feels you would be interested in based on said topic.

        I am willing to bet thats what this guy is trying to do.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 6 Jul 2010 @ 6:05am


      Double post?

      Stop double clicking on the send button!

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Yogi, 6 Jul 2010 @ 3:25am


    That does not sound right at all. Hard to believe that secular Turks would be involved in blocking internet access. On the other hand the ruling party is an Islamist party which is much more likely to want to block access and have the power to do so.

    Since the government owns the courts - and the BBC should know this - than basically the government is blocking internet access to the country.

    If the secular Attaturk organization did this to annoy the government than they would probably be behind bars by now. It is probably way too late in the day to stop Erdogan.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    florida sr22, 6 Jul 2010 @ 5:32am


    Anyone who has ever been in Turkey can confirm that there really are 2 countries over there.

    People in the Asian part are really different from those living in Istanbul and the European part.

    I hate to say this, but in recent months (all the agro with Israel included) Turkey is moving away from the West and getting closer to countries like Iran.

    Politicians must do something right about now!

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Colg, 6 Jul 2010 @ 6:39am


    Wait... there is stuff on youtube that defames Ataturk?
    Now I have to go watch it...

    Wow, youtube seems to be stuffed with pro Ataturk propaganda.
    what ever shes pissed about must be buried in the comments somewhere...

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    Hephaestus (profile), 6 Jul 2010 @ 6:59am

    Follow the money

    Who is making money off this blocking of google?

    Lets go to all the top 100 sites post defaming material and then notify the Ataturk Thought Association about the posts. It would be fun to see how much of the internet we can actually get banned in Turkey.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    amiram, 6 Jul 2010 @ 8:39am

    turkish president

    I can't understand how a so called "Turkish President"can critic internal Israel policy and government?only a president from a country with 70% unalphabetics which will never be accepted to the European market can critic the Israeli government,is he tring to compete with his prime minister who was kicked in his balls a cripple horse?

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

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