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Turkey Censors YouTube 482

FM Reader writes "After a controversial mock-up video reportedly submitted by a Greek member about Mustafa Kemal Ataturk, the founder of modern Turkey, Turkish courts ordered the national ISPs to ban the online video service, YouTube. YouTube hostnames are currently redirected at the DNS level to a page that announces the court order."
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Turkey Censors YouTube

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  • by Moby Cock ( 771358 ) on Wednesday March 07, 2007 @11:25AM (#18262174) Homepage
    Anything that "insults" Turkishness is illegal in Turkey. It makes for some very odd behaviour. For example, their most famour novelist was recently tried in the courts because he admitted (while in SwitzerlandO) that he believed that Turkey played a role in the Armenian Genocide. Participation in genocide is construed as insulting Turkishness and thus prosecutable. My friend married a Turkish woman and she is the most nationalistic person I've ever known. She will not tolerate any jokes or snide comments about Turkey.
  • by FatSean ( 18753 ) on Wednesday March 07, 2007 @11:31AM (#18262240) Homepage Journal
    The French want to outlaw the filming of violence by non-journalists but allows for sexual content...and the Murricans want to up the violence but censor anything vaguely sexual.

    Turkey is the worst of both worlds it seems!'re never going to join the EU this way. Probably best for the EU too, Turkey's economy is not so hot.
  • This is why (Score:3, Interesting)

    by jbeaupre ( 752124 ) on Wednesday March 07, 2007 @11:34AM (#18262272)
    I enjoy living in a country where not only is it legal to point out flaws and ridicule those in power, it is a national pastime. What more restrictive countries miss is that by letting everyone vent their opinions any time they want (and vote from time to time), dissent never seems to lead to revolution. Granted, this was a case of a Greek making fun of Turkey. A bit of historical animosity there. But a better response would have been along the lines of "Is that your best shot?" Maybe take a page from Cyrano. Like when an Israeli publication launched it's own anti-jewish cartoon contest in response to an Iranian newspaper's similar contest with the stated goal that they could self criticize better than any outsider (no idea on the outcome).
  • by sesshomaru ( 173381 ) on Wednesday March 07, 2007 @11:58AM (#18262564) Journal
    Here's a Turkish blog with an excerpt from an article by Gary Brecher about the "Father of All Turks"

    Gary Brecher: Glory to the Turks []

    Oh, and also here is the Pingus engine game, Gallipoli: The Game [] which has a very short bio of Ataturk on the page("Mustafa Kemal Atatürk (Turkish): Killed a lot of Australians (and New Zealanders) at Gallipoli and therefore became the first President of Turkey."), but it also has a picture. You can play as Ataturk in the game which is a good example of Australian sardonic humor.

  • by drinkypoo ( 153816 ) <> on Wednesday March 07, 2007 @12:03PM (#18262652) Homepage Journal

    For example, a Greek girl told me that they were racists and they were assholes that tried to invade certain Greek lands and that a lot of Turks try to emigrate to other places and do terrible things. Then, a cousin living in Spain also told me to beware of the Turks, he told me "I am no racist or anything but it seems that at least in Barcelona the only people that will assault and rob you are Turks". And then an American who lived in Egypt and other places also talked of Turks as shit (of course, well... she is American so... take it with a grain of salt).

    So the only people who you can't trust in this list are the Americans?

    Congratulations for outing yourself as a bigot.

    Americans are people too. Try not to forget this.

    I have nothing against them, from where I come from (Mexico) I had no preconception of them but wow It seems they should have done things very wrong to be seen how they are seen. Of course I cant put my hands in the fire for Mexicans as lots of Americans might see us like illegal aliens trying to take out your jobs (Although... as our so "loved" ex-president, Mexicans go to USA to do work that "not even blacks" like to do [with apologies to our fellow non-white friends]).

    Although many Americans don't understand this, America has set up the situation in Central America quite deliberately and successfully to achieve certain goals. One of them is to have someplace close to home to have manufacturing work done cheaply. Another is to provide a source of cheap labor for jobs Americans don't want to do for a price that will sustain the market. What many Americans don't understand is that they will be paying four dollars for a head of iceberg lettuce (currently a dollar or less when in season for those who don't know because they are lucky enough to live somewhere else) if we don't have this pool of laborers that can be cheated on wages and for whom benefits are not paid.

    Illegal immigration is just a hidden cost of our system of corporate welfare.

    Americans are not any more or less stupid than anyone else. What we are is lazy, because we can be. We've had it so good for so long we've forgotten what real hardship was like. No one is starving in this country because there is no help for them, only because they do not like what they will have to do to get the help, which is usually just to admit that they are helpless but sometimes involves a change of lifestyle.

  • Re:sad (Score:2, Interesting)

    by ak3ldama ( 554026 ) < minus city> on Wednesday March 07, 2007 @12:16PM (#18262842) Homepage Journal
    Dont the people of Turkey care? It is a Democracy. How can you have a democracy without criticizing those in power?
  • Re:Ouch (Score:1, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday March 07, 2007 @12:27PM (#18262988)
    No, Canadian, but thanks for the insult though. Despite you guys thinking that Americans are stupid here is a little something: Americans are going to space, Turks still don't believe that space exists.
    Anyway, Istanbul (Constantinople) is big, but this was not a comment about the size of Istabul but rather about number of people using computers and the internet. Since this article was not about demographics, but rather the opression of Turkish government let's leave it at that.
  • Anything that "insults" Turkishness is illegal in Turkey. It makes for some very odd behaviour. For example, their most famour novelist was recently tried in the courts because he admitted (while in SwitzerlandO) that he believed that Turkey played a role in the Armenian Genocide. Participation in genocide is construed as insulting Turkishness and thus prosecutable. My friend married a Turkish woman and she is the most nationalistic person I've ever known. She will not tolerate any jokes or snide comments about Turkey.

    How amusing. And how very revealing. Hypersensitivity is always a billboard advertising low self-esteem.

    And considering the kinds of ideological torsion they live with, and the power-grabbing inhumanity they show their minorities (armenians, kurds, etc.), it's no wonder they're hypersensitive. To be a Turk is to walk around in a state of perpetual cognitive dissonance.

    To my eye, America has the opposite problem: we enjoy the ability to absorb insults, and even to make fun of ourselves, because we are actually a bit overconfident in the quality of our culture and the consistency of our ideology. (Even so, we at least have the colossal distinction of being the first country on Earth to have the power to militarily conquer the world who did not proceed to do so.)

  • by jabagi ( 83535 ) <jabagi.kok @ s f .> on Wednesday March 07, 2007 @12:43PM (#18263200)
    The Turkish government and bureaucracy does not understand the Internet yet. The legal system still holds user generated content sites responsible for policing the content and may legally stop them a take down order (similar to DMCA take down notices). For international websites, they may disable access till the dispute is cleared (similar to freezing bank accounts in criminal cases.) However the legal system is not yet aware of using IPs instead of URLs and such blocks as this one end up being nothing more than an annoyance. This mentality causes quite a lot of problems for Internet users in Turkey but let's not forget that this is not unique to Turkey. Before you criticize Turkey, please remember that the USA hosts a menace called RIAA whose sole purpose has become to stop P2P (they'd have better luck trying freeze hell.) And this latest block is not even remotely the stupidest legal act in Turkey; 1-2 years ago the government tried to revise IT related laws and declared that every web site must present its content to the local authorities, on paper, in triplicate! It took a few months to make the government understand that this was not possible. Disclaimer: I'm a Turkish citizen but not Turkish...
  • Link to video? (Score:2, Interesting)

    by chainLynx ( 939076 ) on Wednesday March 07, 2007 @12:49PM (#18263302) Homepage
    Um, how about a link to this alleged controversial video? Would be nice to know what the hubbub is all about...
  • by nietsch ( 112711 ) on Wednesday March 07, 2007 @12:56PM (#18263416) Homepage Journal
    This argument is always abused when somebody wants to argue that turkey should not be part of the EU. As far as I know, the EU is most of all an economic union, this argument has no economic merit at all. 'They' can not own up their atrocities, as the 'they' that committed them are long dead and buried. Only if you have very oldfashioned morals you can think that a country (or people as turkey is not the ottoman empire) carries this guilt over the generations. Its mostly racism that motivates these 'Turkey not in EU' plebs.
  • by o'reor ( 581921 ) on Wednesday March 07, 2007 @01:11PM (#18263648) Journal
    I am apalled at the number of replies that would deserve a "-1, *wooosh!*" moderation for not getting your joke in the first place ;-)
  • by quag7 ( 462196 ) <> on Wednesday March 07, 2007 @01:28PM (#18263900) Homepage
    I'm not Armenian or Turkish or Greek; so I have no specific axe to grind at all, except to say that this site, referenced in a previous reply as some sort of "evidence" against the genocide, is pathetic: []

    Within 3 paragraphs, it builds the same kind of "they have wealth and power and control information" conspiracy bullshit in the same way anti-Semitic literature does, and then makes this remarkable statement:

    "Turks characteristically shun propaganda, and have chosen not to dwell on the tragedies of the past, forging ahead to build upon brotherhood."

    That may be true of most Turks, but I have my doubts about the guy publishing this site. Not much brotherhood in that website.

    Armenians in the United States, at least, are not a large ethnic group.

    "As descendants of the merchant class from the Ottoman Empire, Armenians have been successful in acquiring the wealth and power to make their voices heard... and they have made good use of the "Christian" connection to gain the sympathies of Westerners who share their religion and prejudices."

    Is utterly ridiculous. Absurd. Most Americans, I'd wager, have never even heard of the Armenian genocide, or find Armenia (or Turkey for that matter) on a map. I'm not proud of this, but this statement rings like a total fabrication in light of it. As for the other Western nations, I cannot say - I hope they know more about this than I assume most Americans do, but I find it hard to believe that Europeans, for instance, are "just making crap up" to fuck with Turkey.

    Either a genocide happened or it did not. Almost to this day, some people expect Germans to continue to apologize for the Holocaust (which is ridiculous and insulting to the generations during and since who have contributed dramatically to the human rights cause and freedom around the world), but the way Germany has dealt with this event in their history (and continues to deal with it) provides an interesting contrast to the way that countries like Turkey (if these comments are representative of the prevalent attitudes in Turkey - I honestly do not know if they are, so I do not mean to impugn all of Turkey) and Cambodia have dealt with theirs.

    *Everyone's shit stinks, including Turkey's.* I know, my own country is right now run by monkeys hurling more than their fair of shit - a display of excess so quintessential to the United States. We also have our unfortunate and shameful legacy of slavery and racism and genocide of the American Indians - something pointed at by the stupid website above - and one thing we do not do - most of us, anyway - is deny it. At least, no one I know does. It is part of our legacy, and who we are. We may not have done enough in penance for these sins - I'm the first to admit it - but no one denies that it happened, and that many of our ancestors - relatives - were responsible for it. There is a statue in the center of Santa Fe - a monument, I forget to who - some cowboy - which talks about how he "battled Indian savages". Not only was the word savages ground off of the statue, but a memorial plaque acknowledging our shit treatment of people who owned that land was placed on it as well. A pittance of a gesture, but at least an acknowledgement of it, and anyone who visits the park in the middle of Santa Fe will reflect on what happened where they're standing. The statue is an example of a nation coming to terms - to some degree - with its unsavory past. Acknowledgement alone isn't enough, but it's the first step.

    Wikipedia has a map of who recognizes this as genocide, and who does not, hence my comment on Europeans since much of Europe recognizes it: eRecognition.png []

    Yes, technically this is off topic, but as an American, I'm getting a little tired of having to take responsibilit
  • by bogjobber ( 880402 ) on Wednesday March 07, 2007 @02:13PM (#18264672)
    Just to clarify, Turkey does acknowledge that the Armenians were killed, they just claim that it was a result of the war and was not intended as genocide. This is just as bad as claiming it didn't even happen, as the evidence overwhelmingly shows it to be an attempted (and largely successful) ethnic cleansing.
  • by rifter ( 147452 ) on Wednesday March 07, 2007 @07:29PM (#18269152) Homepage

    A lot of terorism would melt away if US and other oil and natural gas hungry countries stop wageging wars in Middle East and other resourcefull areas.

    Wars have been fought in the Middle East for perhaps 100,000 years. At least within the context of the much smaller time period recorded by history, the wars have been about access and resources. It's been about access to land, spices, holy sites, oil, and a few other things. In fact to a lesser extent oil was a factor in ancient warfare there as well since naptha was a much-sought-after commodity and it could be found there.

    In any case, wars will continue as long as the Middle East is between us and what we want, or has something we want that we feel other people are an obstacle to our access. This can go anywhere from simple refusal to trade or instability leading to the blockage of trade, to "unfair" prices. The "we" in that sentence is as variable as the "they," but the simple fact of the matter is that geography, history, and geology have come together to make the Middle East the most volatile region on Earth. It may even be the original source of the idea of war, and certainly is the stage for the earliest recorded wars in the sense in which we know them. War will never end, and the problem of peacably resolving human conflict cannot be said to have been itself resolved, until these things are accomplished in the Middle East.

    There are some people who think that when Europe and the US no longer require fossil fuels from the Middle East they can safely ignore it. After all, we don't necessarily need to use overland trade routes which involve these countries anymore. I would submit that the problem may not be so easily laid to rest as it would seem that ignoring the Middle East and allowing countries there to lag behind the entire rest of the world including other third-world nations in terms of technology, economy, civilization, education, etc has already cost us and is ultimately the root of the problem which has led us here. It's not a problem of intervening so much as intervening in the wrong way (setting up oppressive governments that discriminate against the most predominant religion, for instance). If we continue to ignore the plight of people who are desperately begging for relief from their suffering they will continue to feel the need to get our attention, and, failing that, inflict a little suffering on us. It's not a question of whether they are right (they aren't) in their tactics, it is a question of whether we are right in allowing the problems there to ocntinue unabated.

UNIX is many things to many people, but it's never been everything to anybody.