[caption id="attachment_82152" align="aligncenter" width="628"] Youtube Ban: Turkey Blocks Youtube[/caption]Freedom of Words Threatened by Turkish Social Media Restrictions
High profile writers from around the world have joined forces to condemn the latest restrictions placed on Social Media by the Turkish government. Following a March 21 restriction placed on the use of Twitter, the Turkish Government's communications authority, TIB, limited access to twitter it claims is designed to protect Turkish national security.
The ban on YouTube follows the release of a voice recording allegedly taken from a high level security meeting held by members of the Turkish government and security agencies. Access to YouTube was limited on March 27, with the Turkish government claiming the ban placed on the video sharing Site could be lifted if the security meeting file is removed.
Respected authors from around the world have voiced their concerns about the perceived threat to the "freedom of words" the attitude of the Turkish government has created. Amongst those registering their protests against the Twitter and YouTube bans are Zadie Smith, Salman Rushdie and Turkish Noble laureate Orhan Pamuk.
The relationship between the Turkish government and Social Media has been strained for many years, with an initial YouTube ban introduced in 2007 and only lifted three years later. Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan has been particularly vocal in his condemnation of Social Media as he set out on the campaign trail to retain his position as Prime Minister. Recent speeches have made clear the Turkish Prime Minister sees Social media as a threat, with Erdogan claiming Turkey would not be held to ransom by Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.
The latest YouTube blackout saw Google state there was no problem with the Site, prompting fears the TIB had used its unlimited power to block websites threatening national security. The ban on Twitter has been overturned by a Turkish court, but still remains in place as fears grow Prime Minister Erdogan will take an increasingly hard line on Social Media and Internet use within Turkey.