The Turkish authorities aiming at banning Twitter created a strong wave of mobilization on the internet.
The Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan announced on March 20th that using Twitter is not allowed to be used in the country. Twitter immediately responded by stating that its services remain accessible in Turkey by SMS .
Ankara wanted to actually slow down the flow of videos concerning a corruption scandal in the country, but this proved to be counter-productive.
Worldwide, such keywords as # Turkey and # TurkeyBlockedTwitter have rapidly emerged as the major trends in the social network.
“The ban seems futile and mainly shows how Turkey is becoming increasingly authoritarian,” said a representative of the Electronic Frontier Foundation, an advocacy group that fight for freedom on the Internet.
“The release of the ban seems to have pushed more Turks to use Twitter for the first time” and considers Philip Howard, increase the bad publicity about the country worldwide. “This has attracted the attention of the entire planet on the increased surveillance and censorship policy lead by the authorities,” he says.
For the last few months, Turkey has been engaged in a major offensive against the Internet, a medium that has contributed significantly to the anti-government protests in Istanbul since 2013.
“The decision to block Twitter, a major communication mode in Turkey, is a measure of an extreme gravity for a government that calls itself a democracy,” said David Kramer, president of Freedom House, an organization fighting for democracy.
“Twitter is already extremely popular in Turkey, where it has millions of users. It is difficult for the authorities to deprive people of freedom on the internet they have enjoyed in the past,” said Ms. Parker, who wrote a book on digital activism in authoritarian regimes.
Reporters Without Borders (RSF) said about this decision to ban Twitter is a “censorship mode that shows it is one of the most repressive states in the world” This has extreme and absurd censorship serious consequences for the flow of information and democratic debate. The disproportion is evident between the aim sought formally and consequences to the freedom of information, “said Christophe Deloire, secretary general of Reporters Without Borders.
According to RSF, this seemingly judicial and administrative decision is actually to “stop the publication of wiretaps that made the government to be in difficulty.” Mr Deloire also mentions that “this decision does unfortunately illustrate the entire scope of the draconian law passed a few weeks to strengthen online censorship.”
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