Turkish court bans YouTube access

Access to the popular video-sharing website YouTube has been suspended in Turkey after clips insulting former Turkish leader Mustafa Kemal Ataturk had appeared on the site. Even after YouTube removed the offending clips, a court order blocked all access to the site. Turkish visitors to the site are now greeted with a message in English and Turkish reading "Access to www.youtube.com site has been suspended in accordance with decision no: 2007/384 dated 06.03.2007 of Istanbul First Criminal Peace Court".

According to Turkish media, there has been a "virtual war" between Greek and Turkish users of the site, with both sides posting insulting videos. The clip prompting the ban reportedly dubbed Ataturk and Turks homosexuals. Insulting Ataturk, the founding father of modern Turkey is an offence which can result in a prison sentence. Paul Doany, the head of Turk Telecom, the country's largest telecoms company, said that they had blocked access to the site as soon as the court order came through and will continue to do so as long as the order stands: "We are not in the position of saying that what YouTube did was an insult, that it was right or wrong. A court decision was proposed to us, and we are doing what that court decision says."

Link: Forum Discussion (Thanks Hum)
News source: BBC News

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35 Comments

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I don't know much about Turkey, but aren't there only like 16 people with internet access there? Yeah, that will have a huge impact...ever try loading YouTube on dialup from the other side of the globe?

Have they even heard of proxy servers over there?

This just in, it appears Turkey can pis* slightly farther.
What does this mean for the other players? Tune in next week for an all-new episode of: Pis*ing Contest: Turkey vs. The Internet.

I don't get it. So there were stuffs exchanged between Greeks and Turks. Then the Turks banned YouTube, 'cuz insulting Turks is a crime. But then on the other hand, it's ok for them to insult others???? ..

wow, why are they trying to get into the EU when they are still doing stuff like this. it just isnt going to happen, they need to make BIG changes for it to go ahead.

neufuse said,
and people try to say that USA has no freedoms :rolleyes:

Um... who says that?
Yeah sure: USA became a quasi-police state after George W. Bush started his al-quieda bogyman campaign and the frightened sheeple handed over a few more of their civil rights, but it's still relatively free. You can insult the founding fathers all you want, you can burn flags, you can be gay (your rights may vary from state to state), you can be a moron (especially if your President Moron), and so on.

I agree with you Croquant, but I always read comments about the "American system of injustice" every time a court case in the US pops up on Neowin. That alone implies a lack of freedoms. Not to mention the countless, "only in America" comments that seem to flood this place, which granted are sometimes about ridiculous news stories, but other times its more towards that lack of freedoms. I agree with you however, the freedoms are still pretty good. I would rather go back to pre-patriot act living, but I live pretty free out here in the United States.

This is so stupid. The internet is supposed to be the information highway, not much of a highway if you start putting road blocks up everywhere.

Myself I see only part of Turkey in Europe anyway the other part in the middle east.

Bit like Israel, they seem to be in the middle east but can be in european competitions.

I don't like all of europe suddenly becoming one state.

We are unique to our own country of birth so keep it that way.

This europe stuff to me is going to cause so many problems, mmm it already does.

That's really beyond retarded x)
And I don't see any countries in the EU having any Human Rights records which are only half as bad as Turkey's.
Police brutality (especially in the prisons) is still quite excessive, and they are still treating their womans like dirt, forcing them to cover their heads with headscarves, wearing very wide and clothing covering everything up, having no say in anything at all etc. (Ok, the latter is common for muslim countries in general)
Banning internet content that doesn't suit them and even giving prison sentences for just "insulting Ataturk" is totally ludicrous!
Before the Turkey doesn't change significantly in all that regards, there will be no chance of them joining the EU.
They are already abusing Cyprus as a backdoor anyway, since they did the hostile invasion of Northern Cyprus in the 70s... it's disturbing how all other countries turn a blind eye about this and never did anything about it.

What do you know about Turkey? have you been in here before?
its just pity that you r talking about something that you even dont know anything and thats ****ing me off :angry:
I think you just watched lots of Anti-Turkish documentary.Get yourself educated before talk something that you dont know next time or meet someone been in Turkey before.

It's funny to read such comments indeed.

Because in Turkey, people who cover their head is really in the manority. (11% or so).

Turkey had its first woman prime minister very early than many other European countries.

In Turkey there are many more woman top managers in business, than for example in Holland

There goes 'Let's don't accept' Turkey's membership to the EU. (As if there was any intention. The country applied in 1964 for the membership!)

Kind of funny, while some of Eastern European countries were accepted while they had as bad if not worse Human Rights records :)

Any way... This is just a court order... There will be an appeal.. If the appeal doesn't work, and if people think that this is is a violation against Human Rights, the case will go to the Hague - Netherlands. Turkey recognises the decisions of this court so YouTube will be back..

It is kind of sad that it takes only a few stupid judges to rip off a country's reputation.

As much as you try and blame the ruling on individual judges, you can't deny the existence of this law (unless you're claiming the article is wrong);

"Insulting Ataturk, the founding father of modern Turkey is an offence which can result in a prison sentence."

As long as that law is on the books then you can't blame the judges who did nothing more than rule in accordance with the laws.

Insulting Ataturk is a crime in Turkey, and it will remain like that for some time to come, however you can very well chritisize him of course - though in such a case you will be labled as radical islamic.

However, this particular case -shutting down access to Youtube from Turkey- has nothing to do with that law but the interpretation of the law. Because the law does not say 'Shut down whole countries' access to a particular site, if one of the site users use the site to offend Ataturk'

Apart from this, everycountry has sensitive characters in their history. I am sure Germany wouldn't really appreciate me much if I attempt to open a political party there appraising Adlof Hitler, or using ebay to promote my pro Hitler ideas or Israel wouldn't like me much either if attempt to publish books there claiming David to be homosexual.

I could understand these judges a little bit if the YouTube itself were broadcasting the movies, but it is not the case. And then again, in such a scenario it would make more sense to sue YouTube and try to get them shut down rather than shutting down the access of Turkey.

Ahh both Turkey and Italy are in NATO....

Also Greece would love to get into a conflict with Turkey especially over Cyprus(the internationally recognised southern portion is in the EU).

But as long as Turkey has a chance of EU membership it wont risk ****ing off current EU members as it only takes 1 negative response from them to halt their EU membership.

I think Brazil tried to ban youtube previously due to another video with a footballers girlfriend doing the dirty on him!!!

Any country that believes banning the media is a good choice is not a country where their people have freedom of speech!

DClark said,
If Turkey attacked Italy in the rear, would Greece help?

HAHAHHA that has to be the best question ever... and someone answered it seriously...

Interesting, so it proves Turkey is still the same old bad boy of Europe.

They want to become full members of the European Union also?

pathetic ruling. If every country reacted like that there would be no media allowed at all in the country.