“GoogleSites” Hit by Turkey’s Censorship

“GoogleSites” Hit by Turkey’s Censorship: “A court in Denizli has banned access to GoogleSites, which contains thousands of sites. The reason for the ban is not known.”

Istanbul – BİA News Center
30 June 2009, Tuesday

GoogleSites allows users to create their own websites, and there are thus thousands of sites available.

Now the 2nd Criminal Court of Peace in Denizli, western Turkey, has banned access to GoogleSites.

The decree of 24 June 2009 does not give any justification for the decision.
Call for protests

The Alternative Informatics Association (Alternatif Bilişim) has criticised the closure, calling for Internet users to protest to the Telecommunications Department by fax, email and telephone and for those who have sites on GoogleSites to protest, too.

The association has offered legal advice for anyone wanting to write a letter of objection or wanting to proceed legally.

The association says that between 23 November 2007 and 11 May 2009, access to 2,601 web sites was banned. Youtube, for instance, has been closed to users in Turkey since 5 May 2008. Other sites used by millions of people, such as wordpress.com, geocities.com, myspace.com, dailymotion.com and alibaba.com have also been banned.
Freedom of expression constantly violated

Alternative Informatics has criticised Turkey’s authorities for their censorship and for their expectation that web sites with users from around the world abide by Turkish legislation.

“The Internet is a space where thoughts can be expressed freely, but sites which contain dissident opinions are being banned one after the other.”

For the association, access to Internet and effective use is “one of our most basic rights”. It has called on people to defend this right. (EK/AG)

(Via Bianet: English.)