Tag Archives: YouTube

YouTube ban restricts rights of Pakistanis: Human rights organisation

KARACHI: Condemning hate speech on the internet in general and the anti-Islam film “Innocence of Muslims” in particular, the Bytes for All (B4A) Pakistan said it believes that banning “channels of communication [YouTube], limiting access to information platforms and steps to curtail free expression only serve to pave the way for politics-based control systems that curb the voices of individuals.”

The B4A, a human rights organisation with a focus on Information and Communication Technologies, commented on the recent ban imposed on video sharing website YouTube as per the order of Prime Minister Raja Pervaiz Ashraf.

The organisation stressed that the film should not be allowed to form the basis of systematic censorship and filtering of internet in the country.

It further stated that the blanket ban restricted the rights of Pakistani citizens, who wish to use the platform for counter-argument, expression and other educational and developmental purposes.

“This extreme step ignores the alternative, more conservative actions that were available to the government, including the issuing of a take-down notice to YouTube for the removal of specific content in Pakistan,” the B4A remarked.

Courtesy: The Express Tribune

Pakistan’s largest telecommunication company “PTCL Internet Blackout in Pakistan”

Pakistan’s largest telecommunication company,PTCL, is suffering a country word service blackout. Users took to twitter to report service suspensions, they are unable to reach out to customer support for any explanation on the blackout.

Google , Facebook, YouTube and loads of other services not working in Pakistan. surprisingly twitter is the only site that’s working on PTCL right now, facebook is not even opening.

Read more » http://storify.com/BoloBhi/ptcl-internet-blackout-in-pakistan?awesm=sfy.co_mLa&utm_campaign=&utm_medium=sfy.co-twitter&utm_source=t.co&utm_content=storify-pingback

New York Times – Pakistan Builds Web Wall Out in the Open

By ERIC PFANNER

PARIS — Many countries censor the Internet, but few spell out their intentions as explicitly as Pakistan.

In an effort to tighten its control over the Internet, the government recently published a public tender for the “development, deployment and operation of a national-level URL filtering and blocking system.”

Technology companies, academic institutions and other interested parties have until March 16 to submit proposals for the $10 million project, but anger about it has been growing both inside and outside Pakistan.

Censorship of the Web is nothing new in Pakistan, which, like other countries in the region, says it wants to uphold public morality, protect national security or prevent blasphemy. The government has blocked access to pornographic sites, as well as, from time to time, mainstream services like Facebook and YouTube.

Until now, however, Pakistan has done so in a makeshift way, demanding that Internet service providers cut off access to specific sites upon request. With Internet use growing rapidly, the censors are struggling to keep up, so the government wants to build an automatic blocking and filtering system, like the so-called Great Firewall of China.

While China and other governments that sanitize the Internet generally do so with little public disclosure, Pakistan is being surprisingly forthcoming about its censorship needs. It published its request for proposals on the Web site of the Information and Communications Technology Ministry’s Research and Development Fund and even took out newspaper advertisements to publicize the project.

“The system would have a central database of undesirable URL’s that would be loaded on the distributed hardware boxes at each POP and updated on daily basis,” the request for proposals says, referring to uniform resource locators, the unique addresses for specific Web pages, and points of presence, or access points.

“The database would be regularly updated through subscription to an international reputed company maintaining and updating such databases,” according to the request, which was published last month.

The tender details a number of technical specifications, including the fact that the technology “should be able to handle a block list of up to 50 million URL’s (concurrent unidirectional filtering capacity) with processing delay of not more than 1 milliseconds.”

Following the Arab Spring, which demonstrated the power of the Internet to help spread political and social change, Pakistan’s move to clamp down has set off a storm of protest among free-speech groups in the country and beyond.

Opponents of censorship say they are doubly appalled because they associated this kind of heavy-handed approach more with the previous regime of Gen. Pervez Musharraf than with the current government of President Asif Ali Zardari.

“The authorities here are big fans of China and how it filters the Internet,” said Sana Saleem, chief executive of Bolo Bhi, a group that campaigns against restrictions on the Internet. “They overlook the fact that China is an autocratic regime and we are a democracy.”

Continue reading New York Times – Pakistan Builds Web Wall Out in the Open

Beygairat Brigade’s YouTube Hit Song Challenges Extremism in Pakistan

Memo From Pakistan: Satirical Song, a YouTube Hit, Challenges Extremism in Pakistan

By SALMAN MASOOD

ISLAMABAD, Pakistan — A satirical song that takes a tongue-in-cheek swipe at religious extremism, militancy and contradictions in Pakistani society has become an instant hit here, drawing widespread attention as a rare voice of the country’s embattled liberals.

The song, “Aalu Anday,” which means “Potatoes and Eggs,” comes from a group of three young men who call themselves Beygairat Brigade, or A Brigade Without Honor, openly mocking the military, religious conservatives, nationalist politicians and conspiracy theorists.

Their YouTube video has been viewed more than 350,000 times since it was uploaded in mid-October. The song is getting glowing reviews in the news media here and is widely talked about — and shared — on social networking sites like Twitter and Facebook.

Read more » The New York Times

 

New bill in congress against alternate media

New Bill In Congress Could Turn Alternative Media Outlets and YouTube Singers Into Felons

By Julianne Escobedo Shepherd

SB 978 is just one more bullet in a broader government effort to end the web as we know it.

In June, Senator Amy Klobuchar, D-Minn., introduced SB 978, specifically “to amend the criminal penalty provision for criminal infringement of a copyright, and for other purposes.” ….

Read more » AlterNet

The rise of people’s media

– By Manzoor Chandio, Karachi, Sindh

A piece of news or information is no more the property of the so-called ministries of information or media barons. New technologies have set free the information from official controls and ‘mainstream media’ newsrooms.

Often called liberating technologies, the cell phone, Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, etc. have assumed the role of new modes of disseminating information. They have allowed every citizen to become a publisher or a journalist. Today the first source of information is a mobile, instead of newspapers or TV channels, where one receives breaking news. ….

Read more → Manzoor Chandio’s Blog

Rehman Malik Threatens Google

– Rehman Malik today announced that the Pakistan Government reserves the right to ban Google and YouTube in Pakistan if the “Google Administrator” did not assist ‘them’ in ‘their’ criminal investigation.

Pakistan’s track record on banning sites without cause or notice, isn’t certainly not a very pretty one, but here’s where statements passed in the media by technology-illiterate government representatives, make the technology-business community a little worried.

Google is a search engine. Just like hundreds of other search engines, it helps people to search for things that they may be looking for based on keywords and phrases. …

Read more → PKPOLITICS

About banning Facebook, YouTube & Twitter in Pakistan

Dr. Manzur Ejaz

More than meets the eye – Dr Manzur Ejaz

– BBC Urdu bulletins were banned in Pakistan without any justification

WICHAAR

In the garb of performing a pious act by banning the most popular internet sites, the government has knocked out its critics. Now, Pakistanis are left at the mercy of the government or corporate media overwhelmed by religious ideologues

Pakistan has done it once again. From Morocco to Indonesia, nowhere did the public come out against the abominable act of depicting cartoons of the Holy Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) except in Pakistan. Other than Pakistan, no other government, including theocracies in Saudi Arabia and Iran, keen on condemning the US in any way, have hurriedly shut down Facebook, YouTube or Twitter and several hundred sites on the pretext of the repulsive cartoons. Both Pakistan’s government and demonstrators have agendas other than reacting to these said cartoons.

The question was raised in my column a week back why most jihadis throwing bombs in other countries are traced back to Pakistan. Another question to raise is, why do only Pakistanis feel hurt when a lunatic publishes something in other countries? Are Pakistani Muslims the most honest, pious and God-fearing in the entire world? Every Pakistani knows in his or her heart that Pakistanis’ honesty and reverence for religion is a myth that is broken every day by corruption, nepotism, underhand dealings, cruelty to the poor and women and overblown greed. Therefore, Pakistanis taking the pain of safeguarding the entire Muslim world is quite hypocritical.

Continue reading About banning Facebook, YouTube & Twitter in Pakistan

Pakistan’s jihad against the Internet

Drawing a line: Pakistan’s jihad against the Internet – By Urooj Zia

HIMAL

A couple of months ago, when self-styled ‘security analyst’ Zaid Hamid’s anti-India vitriol started getting out of hand, a group of Pakistanis got together on Facebook to condemn his hate speech and calls for war against ‘Hindu Zionists’. There were jokes about ‘Jihad-e-Facebook’ and ‘Ghazwa-e-YouTube’ because, like former dictator Gen (retd) Pervez Musharraf, that’s where an overwhelming majority of Hamid’s supporters were anyway. No one could have thought at the point that an organ of the state would declare jihad against Facebook, but that is exactly what has happened. On 19 May, on a petition filed by a group calling itself the Islamic Lawyers Movement, the Lahore High Court ordered the Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) to block Facebook in response to the perceived blasphemy of a single page about ‘Draw … Day’.

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