YouTube yields to royal pressure

YOUTUBE is likely to remove all video clips deemed insulting to Thailand's king, a government official said Thursday, paving the way to the ban on the website being lifted. The popular video-sharing site, owned by internet giant Google, has been blocked to Thai users since early April, when clips showing digitally-altered images of revered King Bhumibol Adulyadej began appearing. Asked whether Google would remove the clips, Vissanu Meeyo, a spokesman for the information ministry, said: "It is likely."

He was responding to reports on the Bangkok Post newspaper's website that the information minister has received a letter from Google's vice president vowing to delete all clips considered offensive to the monarch. Mr Vissanu told AFP that information minister Sitthichai Pookaiyaudoom would hold a press conference on Friday to disclose the details.

View: The full story
News source: AustralianIT

Report a problem with article
Previous Story

Longhorn Server to be christened Windows Server 2008

Next Story

Google gives UK mobile maps the green light

14 Comments

Commenting is disabled on this article.

yeah i side on the Thais as well, its not the king thats offended, its the people that are, and to take down the videos is going to at least give abit of peace to the people

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bhumibol#L.C3.A8se_majest.C3.A9 heres abit of wikipedia goodness... the king himself seems like a cool guy, if you manage to get him to pardon you you're scott free.... like the videos are almost like theyre meant to cause trouble in the whole country rather than to express freedom of speech

i guess its human nature , that if there is a rule that says dont make fun of the king (or just about any other rule) , people will always try to break it for the sake of breaking it....

is all this censoring happening in response to the situation in the country, or is the situation in the country partly caused by this censoring....

I'm really sick of you, western guys. I support free speech but this kind of thing do hurt all Thai people.
We love our King not because he is our king, but because he work so hard since he take a throne 60 years ago.
Long before lots of you ever born.

Actually I had lots of thing in my mind, but since I'm not good at English, so I can't really express it here.
But I beg you to stop insult my king. Did you have someone you love? And what did you feel when your
love got insult? That the feeling we, 60 millions, Thai people feel now.

What's wrong with criticism, or for another matter, being made fun of. The real way to deal with it is to realize that in the grand scheme of things not everyone can like you and you don't have to acknowledge stupid comments or criticisms because they are just stupid. He should have laughed at it and forget, he's making a mountain out of a molehill.

I for one think your king is a baby.

So who gives your king the right to not be challenged? If someone thinks negatively of him, they should be able to express it. If they don't, they should be able to express it as well. If one side is prevented from expressing their views, that is a violation of the fundamental right of the freedom of speech in most countries in this world.

For someone who's worked so hard to get to the top, he sure is insecure. I mean, why would any powerful king give a rats ass about what the mere "peons" say?

Just because you guys live in some sort of monarchy does NOT mean we are apart of it. We bow down to no jerk off that does not lead us. President Bush might not be the brightest, but he has a hell of a lot more gut, even when it's his own people that are criticizing him. Hell, there's even a cartoon series that's going to air about him called "Lil Bush" (found here). If Bush can put up with it, I'm sure a king can.

While I understand why you feel offended and wronged by having your King insulted, the situation reminds me of a quote: "I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it." That is why so many "westerners" are upset about this situation. When you take away someone's right, you damage the society by opening the door to oppression. The situation is bigger than the King being insulted, it's about preventing oppression. It may not be nice, but the right to say it should be protected.

People that are criticizing the king for causing all of this are foolish and uninformed. The king is mostly a figure head. The government is not a monarchy.

Never mind, people here (and other places) can only chant "free speech" without understanding the concept. Probably dont even understand the true basis of your own government. The words "free speech" are more than just a couple of words to throw out that explain their "right" to spew.

Ok people, I'm Thai, and this is my respond to all of you who care to here my opinion. For those who don't, please skip to the next comment.

Free speech? Voltaire quote? Yes I've heard all of that, but I also have one more word for this.

Discrimination

I know you guys would argue that it's not, but it is to us. Have you ever heard of the controvercy about native american protests that their Chief shouldn't be used as a mascot? Isn't the picture of a black funny guy consider as an offense to Black people now? You will never know, people. You will never know when "a joke" can turn to an offense. Thai government is trying to tell you that it's not a joke now, it's an offense (they told this to YouTube before start blocking it). Of course, your freedom of speech give you the right to say whatever you want, but that's just a part of the whole story. Don't you guys have a law against hated speech? Freedom always comes will a regulation, because you want to give the freedom to everyone, not some who are in power.

By no mean our king is perfect, and we (at least myself) will listen to what you have to say why he is bad (he don't even care about those videos, it's all Thais that do care), but making fun of him will be another story. If you thought that it's not an offense, I'm right here to tell you that it is. However, if you still don't give it a damn about discrimination.... Well, I guess I have nothing more to say then.

PS. I do apologize about my poor english for those who care to read my opinion.

Shame on Youtube, shame on Google. Censor all controversial content!

Start by remove all the video's suggesting that 911 was an inside job,
this is surely more insulting to ANYONE who is a Bush republican.

Google " Do no evil", more like Google "kowtow to despots"
"Shame on you"

It would have been good to see responsibility and honor taking precedence over democracy and free speech. Sadly, I believe that you are correct, and it's all about business.

axious said,
Great to see business taking precedence over democracy and free speech!

Note that each country has it's own way of administer itself. Each way is inserted on social and historical bases that makes that possible.
So, democracy and free speech may be a maintainer to our society, but may be a complete social chaos to others.

Note also that democracy is far from being "people's choice" once this choice is totally sujectable to people's ignorance and, principally, the influence of big groups who can influence (and even control) people's way of thinking.
Jus some toughts, not protecting google or youtube on this action, just making considerations about this so ignorant and uncontextualized trial of universalization of a so local and illusory principle that is democracy.