UPDATE: The video in question was apparently removed by the user, not by YouTube. Here's YouTube's statement:
We are disappointed that YouTube has been blocked in Turkey given that the video in question has been removed, and we remain committed to working with authorities to resolve this matter. The Internet is an international phenomenon and while technology can bring great opportunity and access to information globally, it can also present new and unique cultural challenges. YouTube reaches a wide global audience and strives to provide a community where people from around the world can express themselves by sharing videos in a safe and lawful manner.- - - - - - - - - -
Following up on news that the government of Turkey blocked access to YouTube this week because of a dumb, homemade video making fun of a historic political figure, Thomas Crampton reports in the International Herald Tribune:
Visitors to the site in Turkey on Wednesday were greeted with the message, first in Turkish and then in English: "Access to www.youtube.com site has been suspended in accordance with decision No. 2007/384 dated 06.03.2007 of Istanbul First Criminal Peace Court."
YouTube expressed dismay over the move, adding that the offending video had been removed and that the company was working with the government to resolve the situation.
"We are disappointed that YouTube has been blocked in Turkey," the company said in a statement. "While technology can bring great opportunity and access to information globally, it can also present new and unique cultural challenges."
A later court ruling said that the service could be restored after YouTube removed the offending material, Anatolia reported, but it was not clear when that would be.
I'd welcome clarification from Google or YouTube, and have emailed but have not yet received a response. No statement in their press center, and the latest entry on the YouTube corporate blog (March 6) only offers information on "What the ladies of YouTube are luvin' this week." Oh well..
( Update: YouTube's statement is above, and all reports now indicate that the video was removed by the user, not by YouTube.)
Crampton goes on to provide context:
In recent weeks, Turkey has pledged to revise a law that makes insulting Turkishness a crime. The law – Article 301 of the Turkish penal code – has resulted in prosecutions against leading Turkish intellectuals, including the author Orhan Pamuk, a Nobel laureate, and Hrant Dink, an Armenian-Turkish journalist who was murdered in January.Link.
But the government has refused to drop Article 301 altogether, while the law against insulting Ataturk, which has given rise to the YouTube case, is considered even more sacrosanct.
Previously on BoingBoing:
Boing Boing editor/partner and tech culture journalist Xeni Jardin hosts and produces Boing Boing's in-flight TV channel on Virgin America airlines (#10 on the dial), and writes about living with breast cancer. Diagnosed in 2011. @xeni on Twitter. email: email@example.com.