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Posts tagged with: Censorship

Bahraini Blogger Blocked By Bahrain

Mahmood Tv CensoredPakistanis don’t need to be told how much it can hurt to be at the receiving end of a censorship on their own blog, we sadly have had a massive blockade on the entire Blogspot.com cordoning off more then 10 million blogs for over 11 months and counting. Its sad to note that a few days back Mahmood.tv a very brilliant and outspoken blogger from Bahrain has been blocked by his own government accsuing him of ‚Äúdefamation of the person of the king and royal family members. (press law no. 47, passed in 2002) … more …
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Blocking of Websites to get Worse

Sept 2nd 2006, The Government of Pakistan has dealt yet another severe blow to the Internet community in Pakistan, as it has now created a body constituted by the Ministry of Information Technology which would examine contents of websites reported or found to be offensive or containing anti-state material and block them off in Pakistan.

It is sad that instead of helping promote the progressive growth of the Internet in Pakistan, the government is choosing to go the opposite direction and slowly creating hurdles upon hurdles in the progressive path of Pakistan. With such a worsening situation of blocking easy access to information technology how can we as a nation compete against the Internet giants around the world.

I feel that censorship will not stop the problem, its like beating a child and hope he behaves, which we never will. My opinion is to keep an open Internet policy and let the people of Pakistan decide what content they would like to see, leave it as a non-issue and no one will notice anything, make it an issue and the entire world watches closely with a microscope. Would some please tell these goofs how to run a country!

Don’t Block the Blog – Committee Formed to Block Websites

News Report Body set up to block websites – DAWN 3rd Sept 2006


Internet Governance in Pakistan

A very interesting post made by TEE EMM (Tariq Mustafa) a veteran Pakistani Blogger who has been blogging since 2001. I had been following his blog for some time but then all of a sudden he disappeared and has reemerged recently back into the blogging world (though I now see a few posts in between so maybe I lost touch) to shed light on the technological issues facing Pakistan. His recent article Internet Governance in Pakistan is worth reading talks about Pakistan’s Registrar PKNIC, this article is recommended especially for the activists who are protesting the Internet Censorship in Pakistan.

TEE EMM – Internet Governance in Pakistan


Inblogs.net – Slap the Block for Indians

Inblogs.net

Yasir Memon & Naveed Memon have come yet again to save the blogging community from the douldrums to have launched Inblogs.net which is similar to pkblogs but more suited for the Indian traffic.

On July 17th the Indian Government has started blocking a number of websites specifically Blogspot, Typepad and Geocities. This comes as a sudden shock to the very active blogging community in India of which a few actually generate a significant amount of revenue in this business. If you care to take part in the on-going discussion it can be found on Bloggers Collective

I am also proud to mention that a few Pakistani creations have come into immediate use by the Indians and we are proud to share our resources with our Indian counterparts as a show of support in the hope of making friends across the border. We are more than willing to shed our differences and stand together to protest this ban both in India and Pakistan.

Of interest is the list of websites that is being presently blocked by the Indian Govt copied from the List of Banned Sites

    hinduunity.org was blocked in Pakistan also
    hinduhumanrights.org
    princesskimberley.com
    bloodspot.com
    dalitstan.org
    clickatell.com
    blogspot.com
    geocities.com
    typepad.com

For more info check out these links
Wiki – Bloggers Against Censorship
Outlook India.com Blocking the Blogs


Blogspot Blocked AGAIN

Well our celebrations from the last post, were indeed short lived as the PTA has again resumed the blocking of the entire blogspot domain. As of today, 6th May 2006 5:00pm, after a brief relief of three precious days for the internet surfing society of Pakistan, the Pakistan Telecommunication Authority appears to have again resumed the blocking of the entire blogspot domain. Initial reports came in at around 5:00pm (Pakistan Time) of problems in accessing the blogspot domain and it was slowly verified by dozens of activists across the country.

It just seems that this cat and mouse game was probably played out just to appease the world during the annual World Press Freedom Day which is held on 3rd of May, ironically it was the same day the entire ban was lifted and we were actually patting each other on the back for a job well done, who knew three days later we were again to land flat on our face.

This brief period of freedom followed by the censorship actually makes us even more determined to create change. We will fight them to the nail and I assure you with good support from friends across the globe we can indeed dream of knocking some common sense into the bureaucracy.

Press Release 6th May – Blogspot Appears to be Banned again in Pakistan

Google Groups Society Against Internet Censorship in Pakistan
Browse Archives at groups.google.com

Free Expression in Asian Cyberspace concludes

The final day of the Free Expression in Asian Cyberspace ended with probably one of the best technical sessions of the event, it was titled “Internet Security” and was conducted by Ethan Zuckerman of Berkman Center / Global Voices, and Nart Villeneuve of Citizenlab. Both were well versed in the security aspects and gave an outstanding presentation first identifying problems of security and then presenting workaround solution to ensure that we can truly surf and blog in true anonymity. Such a discussion could not have been better suited for this conference on Free Speech in Asia where many nations are engufled with cyber censorship.

The technical workshop “Internet Security” can be found at Slide, Audio 1, 2, 3, 4, 5


Free Expression in Asian Cyberspace (Day 2)

Free Expression in Asian Cyberspace

The second day of the Free Expression in Asian Cyberspace was quite interesting to say the least, which covered issues of technology and legal implications on free speech movement

Issac Mao, hails from China and talked about some very interesting ways how the Chinese by pass the GFW (Great Fire Wall). The authorities maintain a very active blocked list, which can dynamically change on a minute to minute basis adapting to any new and offensive content that the Chinese might cause problems. After hearing the lengths to which the internet surfers in china go about in attempting to by pass this blockage one really needs to appreciate the access we usually take for granted

Dr. Awab Alvi Don’t Block the Blog talked about the struggle of bloggers in Pakistan fighting against the local censorship (Slides, Audio)

Nart Villeneuve, Citizen Lab showed how their organization helps in doing research in a number of countries trying to better understand how governments which can be a resource to the internet users in that specific location, hence maybe armed with that knowledge one can proceed accordingly (Slides, Audio)

Dini Wildiastuti, Article 19 discussed the benefits of the hundreds of reports freely available on the Article 19 website which are predominantly legal implications in this interconnected world (Slides, Audio, Video)

Jeff Ooi, RSF talked on the impact of terrorism and national security laws affecting cyberspace (Slides, Video)

Rebbecca Mackinnon, Global Voices / Berkman Center shed light on the business of the Internet and how to learn from the guru’s like Yahoo and Google, she discussed the creation of the extremely successful Global Voices Project (Slides, Video)

JV Rufino, INQ7 an editor discussed how the his local Philippine internet news agency caters to the booming Internet and has positioned itself into a highly successful local business model. He discussed a few interesting interactions between the Marketing and Editorial team trying to balance content to profit (Slides)

Owais Aslam Ali, Pakistan Press Foundation shed some interesting views of how the offline community slowly embraces the world wide web (Video)

Andrew Lih closed the day with a technical workshop on wikipedia demonstrating the value and easy of edit ability of this massive constantly evolving encyclopedia, he also showed examples of how to implement the wiki model in organizing projects on a global basis.

The day ended with a delicious dinner at Jade Garden hosted by Smart Communications


Silencing the Pakistani Blogs

Silencing the Pakistani Blogs

On the start of the second day of the Freedom of Expression in Asian Cyberspace conference, I was chosen to project the efforts of Don’t Block the Blog.

The PowerPoint presentation is Silencing the Pakistani Blogs PowerPoint presentation (1 MB), an audiopodcast is available in MP3 here(6.4 MB), while I also enclose the entire text of my speech below.
Continue reading “Silencing the Pakistani Blogs” »


Slap the Block

Slap the Block

The creative mind of a few local Pakistanis Yasir Memon & Naveed – has created this nifty utility for those individuals in Pakistan stuck behind the Government supported censorship on our Internet

The way this service works is that you can simply go-to

http://www.pkblogs.com/blogname
where blogname is “blogname.blogspot.com”

Alternatively head on over to www.pkblogs.com – you get NO ads or any annoying pop-up to disturb your surfing experience, the service converts all inside and outside links

Continue to take part in the DON’T BLOCK THE BLOG Campaign


Don’t Block the Blog – 2

Just a progress report on the Censorship Campaign organized by our own administration. I am embarrassed to point out that the blockage still exists, it now can be understood as NOT an innocent mistake but more as an organized ploy to deliberately block all blogs. No progress has been made to alleviate this blockage and neither has the government issued any statement for the same, they expect to let the critics like us shout and we will soon die off after having not achieved anything.

I am proud the with the help of my Team at Help-Pakistan.com namely Omer Alvie, we have launched into a massive campaign with the slogan Don’t Block the Blog and have an online protest to the local and international media, side-by-side a large group of energetic individuals have also joined together calling themselves Action Group Against Banning Blogspot in Pakistan a mailing list which is writing some strong letters and issuing press releases to all media outlets around the globe. We all know that the Government of Pakistan usually gives a damn to protesting local citizens but instead will most likely react if the international agencies coming knocking down hard on the door asking questions.

Check out the updated list of articles appearing in newspapers and websites around the world at Don’t Block the Blog link on Help-Pakistan.com

Come fight shoulder to shoulder with us (even if you are not directly affected) it every humans fundamental right to Free Speech


Don’t Block the Blog

As I write this post on the morning of 4th March 2006 all sub domains of Blogspot.com carrying thousands of free blogs continue to remain censored for all internet users in Pakistan. The mess all started on the 27th of February when the Pakistan Telecommunication Authority issued instructions to all ISP to block all websites displaying the controversial cartoon images of Prophet Muhammad.

Hence from the 28th of February the regulatory body barred access to a number of sites and it sadly included a few domains being hosted on the blogspot domains, rather then blocking the select few websites it seems they placed a universal block on all Blogspot.com sub-domains causing a number of bloggers to be banned from their own site for no apparent reason whatsoever.

Mixed responses came through in the previous few days some claiming it to be a technical glitch at Google (owners of Blogspot.com) and a few reports by some Indian based surfers facing the same problem indicating a bigger problem than a local Pakistan issue. My personal experience remained consistent throughout the three days with a total blackout only solved by accessing the blocked sites through an anonymous proxy server, it goes to prove that the website is functioning fine and some censorship may after all exist.

I continue to object to the cartoons illustrations and feel that the decision by the Supreme Court of Pakistan should be implemented for what its worth, but the PTA should be reprimanded for idiotic move as it seems the PTA continues to disappoint the Pakistanis time after time again for some stupid ill-thought out mistakes

We as Pakistani Bloggers Stand Up United and Protest the Blocking of thousands of innocent Blogs which have no connection to the controversial images and would like to we appeal the the PTA to remove the blanket censorship on all blogspot address.

Please copy the banner image found on Help-Pakistan.com and display it on your website to show your support

DONT BLOCK THE BLOG

UPDATE: Similar articles by Teeth Maestro also Published at Desicritics.org | Karachi Metroblog | Digg.com | Shoutwire | Newsvine


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