ONLINE CENSORSHIP

  • Online freedom declines in growing number of countries but India's position improves December 5, 2014

    Washington: Internet freedom suffered this year as a growing number of countries stepped up efforts to spy on users and censor online postings, a global survey showed Thursday. The report by the non-government watchdog group Freedom House said online freedom declined in 36 of 65 countries surveyed. In some cases, governments use...
  • Right to be 'forgotten' is creating 'memory holes' in the Internet: Wikipedia August 7, 2014

    Washington: The foundation which operates the Wikipedia information website said on Wednesday an EU court ruling on the right to be "forgotten" is creating "memory holes" in the Internet. The ruling "is undermining the world's ability to freely access accurate and verifiable records about individuals and events," said Lila Tretikov, executive...
  • China disrupts Google services ahead of 25th anniversary of Tiananmen Square massacre June 2, 2014

    Beijing: Google services are being disrupted in China ahead of this week's 25th anniversary of the 1989 crackdown on prodemocracy demonstrators around Beijing's Tiananmen Square, a censorship watchdog said on Monday. GreatFire.org said in a blog post that the government appeared to have begun targeting Google's main search engine and Gmail,...
  • Turkish attempt to ban Twitter appears to backfire March 22, 2014

    Ankara: Turkey's attempt to block access to Twitter appeared to backfire on Friday with many tech-savvy users circumventing the ban and suspicions growing that the prime minister was using court orders to suppress corruption allegations against him and his government. Turkey's telecommunications authority said it had blocked access to the social...
  • China claims to have 'cleaned' the Internet with crackdown on rumour November 29, 2013

    Beijing: China's campaign against online rumours, which critics say is crushing free speech, has been highly successful in "cleaning" the Internet, a top official of the country's Internet regulator said on Thursday. China has the world's most sophisticated online censorship system, known outside the country as the Great Firewall. It blocks...
  • Censorship around the world will end in a decade: Google's Eric Schmidt November 22, 2013

    Washington: Google Executive Chairman Eric Schmidt has a bold prediction: Censorship around the world could end in a decade, and better use of encryption will help people overcome government surveillance. In a lecture at Johns Hopkins University on Wednesday, the executive of the world's biggest web search company made a pitch...
  • 'Technical glitch' gives Iranians temporary access to Facebook September 17, 2013

    Dubai: Iranians gained direct access to Facebook and Twitter for the first time in four years because of a technical fault, an Iranian official said on Tuesday, denying suggestions the government had lifted a ban on social media. On Monday evening, several Iranians said they gained access to their accounts without...
  • Pakistan ban on Google's YouTube challenged in court September 16, 2013

    Islamabad: ToffeeTV has hit an unexpected snag. The Internet startup depended on YouTube to promote "Hokey-Pokey," "The Umm Nyum Nyum Song" and other language-teaching clips it produces for children, but the video-sharing website has been banned in Pakistan for nearly a year. The measure was imposed to block videos that Muslims...
  • Online censorship: SC to hear plea against govt action May 15, 2013

    New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Wednesday agreed to hear a plea seeking to restrain government authorities from taking any coercive action against anyone for posting alleged objectionable comments on social networking sites. An application was filed before the apex court seeking its direction to the authorities not to take...
  • Govt to appeal against HC order blocking anti-IIPM web pages February 28, 2013

    New Delhi: Bowing to public pressure the government on Thursday will challenge the Gwalior High Court's order of blocking 78 webpages, of which 73 had articles critical of the Indian Institute of Planning and Management (IIPM) and its director Arindam Chaudhuri. The court order had asked Director General of Indian Computer...
  • DoT orders blocking of 73 URLs with content critical of IIPM: Report February 15, 2013

    New Delhi: The news of the Department of Telecommunications (DoT) reportedly asking Internet service providers to block access to 78 URLs from India had the Indian cyberspace abuzz. According to a DoT directive dated February 14, 2013, addressed to all Internet service licensees, accessed by MediaNama, a website that covers...
  • Twitter shuts out German neoNazi group's account October 19, 2012

    Berlin: Twitter has for the first time blocked an account using a new tool that allows it to bar content in individual countries, shutting out a banned German neoNazi group at the behest of local authorities. Twitter spokesman Dirk Hensen told The Associated Press in an email on Thursday that the...
  • Facebook, YouTube blocked in Kashmir October 1, 2012

    New Delhi: Internet users in Kashmir are unable to access Facebook and YouTube. The government had issued orders to Internet service providers to restrict access to the websites. This move is believed to be in response to the protests against the antiIslam video on YouTube. It was previously reported that the...
  • Haphazard censorship? Leaked list of blocked sites August 23, 2012

    New Delhi: An analysis of a leaked list of items that were ordered to be blocked by Indian Internet Service Providers (ISPs) on directions from the Department of Telecom bring to light the inconsistencies in India's online censorship efforts. Pranesh Prakash, programme manager at the Centre for Internet and Society (CIS),...
  • Egypt court orders ban of pornographic websites March 30, 2012

    Cairo: An Egyptian court has ordered the government to ban pornographic Internet websites in order to protect society and its values. The decision and a similar initiative in parliament has fed into fears by liberal and secular Egyptians that their country is moving down the path to fundamentalist Islam, following a...
  • Social media content creators need protection: Experts March 30, 2012

    New Delhi: Calling the country's IT rules as "flawed", experts at a seminar Thursday said the right to freedom of expression should also provide protection to the content creators. Speaking at a debate organised by Foundation of Media Professionals (FMP) at the India International Centre, veteran journalist R Jagannathan held "vested...
  • Wanted: Censor for Pakistan's Internet March 9, 2012

    Islamabad: Pakistan is advertising for companies to install an Internet filtering system that could block up to 50 million Web addresses, alarming free speech activists who fear current censorship could become much more widespread. Internet access for Pakistan's some 20 million Web users is less restricted than in many countries in...
  • 'Most radicalism linked to the Internet' February 6, 2012

    London: Internet service providers should do more to prevent the web from playing a role in promoting violent extremism, British lawmakers said in a report published on Monday. The Internet has become an important factor in nurturing the extremist threat, surpassing universities and prisons as a place where dangerous ideas are...
  • Google to start countryspecific blog censorship February 1, 2012

    New Delhi: In the face of ongoing pressure from different governments on Google to censor content on the many services that the search engine giant operates, Google is taking a middle path. Google's popular blogging platform Blogger has started to redirect blogs to localised domains, also known as countrycode top level...
  • Twitter CEO defends new censorship policy January 31, 2012

    Dana Point: Twitter CEO Dick Costolo sought to calm the global outrage over the company's new countrybycountry censorship policy, complaining in part that the issue is being treated with the same kind of shorthand that has made Twitter popular. Speaking at the All Things D conference on Monday, Costolo repeated the...
  • Five Questions: India and online censorship January 16, 2012

    In the second of the series, Five Questions we pose five questions on the legal aspects of the recent controversy over the Indian government's attempts at censoring content on the Internet to lawyer Sajan Poovayya. Poovayya is the managing partner at Poovayya & Co, a fullservice law firm based...
  • Beijing tightens controls over microblogs December 16, 2011

    Beijing: The Beijing city government said on Friday it would tighten control over popular microblogs that have vexed authorities with their rapid dissemination of news, giving users three months to register with their real names or face legal consequences. China has repeatedly criticized microblogs for irresponsibly spreading what it calls unfounded...
  • The Social Networker: Power to the People December 15, 2011

    "Kapil Sibal is an idiot" proclaimed innumerable updates on Facebook and Twitter in response to the government's efforts to get social networking websites to prescreen content posted by users. The question isn't whether the IT minister is an idiot or not but why are governments so afraid of the social...
  • Discuss web regulation move in Parliament: BJP December 7, 2011

    New Delhi: The BJP on Wednesday said any move to regulate social networking sites should be made after taking the view of Parliament but maintained that material which would hurt religious sentiments or is defamatory should be checked. Union Telecom Minister Kapil Sibal had summoned representatives of Google, Facebook, Yahoo and...
  • Five reasons why India can't censor the Internet December 7, 2011

    In just 24 hours, in the Facebook alumni group of St Stephen's College, Communications Minister Kapil Sibal's ratings crashed faster than that of US President Barack Obama or what former telecom minister A. Raja, now in judicial custody over second generation (2G) spectrum case, ever had. In a survey to pick...
  • Hyderabad netizens say no to content prescreening December 7, 2011

    HYDERABAD: Telecom Minister Kapil Sibals efforts to gag the social media had netizens up in arms on Tuesday. Sibal for once was trending at the top of the list on Twitter throughout the day. His demand for prescreening content even before its uploaded on websites like Facebook evoked sharp reactions...
  • Government's web diktat censoring the Internet? December 6, 2011

    The Government's idea of prescreening monitoring content on social media websites is attracting widespread debate. ...
  • Won't remove 'controversial' content: Google December 6, 2011

    New Delhi: Amidst the raging controversy over content regulation online, Internet search giant Google India on Tuesday said it complies with the law of the land but will not remove any material just because it is controversial. "We work really hard to make sure that people have as much access to...
  • Google India clarifies on its content policy December 6, 2011

    New Delhi: Google India has issued a statement in connection to the Minister of Communications and IT Kapil Sibal's assertion that Internet companies should prescreen content posted by users before publishing. "We work really hard to both follow the law and also give people as much access to information as...
  • Censor war: 'Big Brother' Sibal vs online India December 6, 2011

    New Delhi: If past incidents and people's reactions are an indicator, then those who frame India's Internet strategies seem to be flummoxed by the Web and don't really understand how the online world behaves. Telecom Minister Kapil Sibal's suggestion that social networking websites screen content before publishing has triggered widespread...