Turkey Bans Google

 Posted by on July 15, 2009  Add comments
Jul 152009
 

Last updated on November 21st, 2015

I can’t vouch for the information as I don’t live in Turkey, but I’ve just found out that Turkey has blocked Google.com Google Groups from internet access for it’s citizens.  See:

Turkey & My Foreign Perspectives with Bea Vanni: Goodbye Google Alert: Hello More Bans for Turkey

While my Turkey blog is less frequent these days, I still track the latest and this one deserves attention. Now Google sites are banned in Turkey; this time the lawsuit hails from Denizli, home of a dear friend of mine.

The International Freedom of Expression Exchange (IFEX) reports that the Second Criminal Court of Peace in Denizli on June 24th banned Google and did not give a reason to add to the lame excuses of bans across Turkish Courts. When will Turkey learn that they cannot patrol the internet to any advantage of their state?

Turkey, internet and freedomNow this is quite serious – and weird.  Turkey, after all, contains NATO/US rocket bases and even wishes to join the EU.  Peace, friendship, allying and self-protection are all wonderful things.  But for most of them, we need some form of  common value system.

See this link for extra confirmation of the ban.  It also means that while people may write fondly of their Turkish holiday experiences, if they now pop into an internet cafe, their Google and YouTube queries or postings will draw a blank.

This is one measure of freedom in my book and puts a big question mark over Turkey’s status.

BTW, there’s even a Google Treasure Chest connection  here, because Turkey controls the northern part of Nicosia, Cyprus, which contains some of the addresses used in the GTC scam.

  8 Responses to “Turkey Bans Google”

  1. Google is a business and nothing to do with freedom. It provides a search service where they hold all the data and deliver all the results. That's it.

    The old mantra about "do no harm" is long gone. Mine and others' investigations into scams have proved that Google is very slow in blocking criminal activity, especially if it increases their profits as a side effect. It's only when they get to a certain level of bad publicity that they 'appear', and I mean 'appear', to do something – as in the lawsuit against Pacific WebWorks (PWW) which looked all cut and dried until it disappeared with barely a mention.

    Now whether Turkey, or France, are hammering into Google for purely altruistic or more likely, nationalistic reasons, is debatable. Because the issue then becomes one of:

    "who controls the information?"

    In this case, who do you trust most, or who do you trust least?

    My gut feeling is that I trust states and governments, by evidence of my own eyes, ears and experience, a bit less than I trust Google.

    But I don't trust Google very much.

  2. Seems the US is attacking google now – does this automatically make the US an anti-freedom state? Perhaps there are some things in our society that need rethinking. In France recently a young person died in an event organised on Facebook, so France is investigating the site with a view to putting restraints on some activities. You could say Turkey is leading the way…….

  3. right now, google.com is also gone. writing from turkey. bye bye google. (reason is said to be that the profit google makes is not taxed.)

  4. I try to keep up with the latest and provided a solid link to more info about the banning. As Jillian comments, it's true that Turkey has everything across media and workable and searchable; however, it doesn't mean that Turkey doesn't routinely have crazies bringing lawsuits to ensure one more thing is censored. Never does anyone, Google, Yahoo, YouTube, WordPress, etc., ever get a chance to defend themselves. Really too bad; and yes, these bans and censors, do impact the knowledge that the Turkish population can have access to at any point in time. IFEX always has the latest on human rights, which is the link I provided in my post. Cheers!

    • Thanks @Bea
      It may seem flippant, but this censorship, enacted from as you say in little more than magistrate's courts, means that Turkish citizens are banned from accessing the delights of the Eurovision Song Contest tunes on YouTube and thus have to go elsewhere…
      This is the Turkish entry:

      n.b. I'm not commenting on artistic or relative merits at all with this. We in the UK have a somewhat jaundiced view of the whole affair… But the point that vast swathes of their culture is shrouded from view, is valid.

  5. ps just found out it’s ‘google groups’ which is banned, not the whole of the search engine.

    • Yes that’s right. I meant to re-visit this posting and amend it, but forgot… Google groups is networking etc, so I wonder if facebook etc are hampered in the same way? The YouTube block is obviously to limit access to politically charged videos which abound.

  6. Oy! Enough of the pillorying! Or however you spell it! Wozza Turkey’s alright. They’ve already banned Youtube ages ago anyway, so what’s one more anti-internet thingy?

    In context, tho I am not agreeing with Turkey’s position, I did visit Youtube a lot and did searches on ‘Turkey’ and such. Unfortunately I got a bunch of young and incredibly attractive Kurdish men doing striptease, transvestites in Istanbul bars (a national speciality, loved by all apparently) and several hundred half-dressed Turkish women offering themselves for marriage to EU members’ members. Strange place Turkey. Lots going on.

    In its internet favour, the use of the net is ubiquitous. There’s a internet cafe on every street corner, every household seems to be online, and you will have access in every hotel room. It’s a national obsession.

    We need to understand these things in context. Perhaps people in Turkey could leave a comment and explain to us what is really going on? If they can get through, that is!

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