Posts tagged "Internet"

h/t: Ben Armbruster at Think Progress World

h/t: Ben Armbruster at Think Progress World


Twitter is investigating reports that the service was blocked in Turkey late Thursday after Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan warned at a rally that he will “eradicate Twitter” and had a court order to do so.


#ALERT | #Twitter has been blocked by the government in #Turkeynow!

“In the ongoing situation, Twitter has remained indifferent to remove certain links despite court orders favoring the citizens of the Turkish Republic,” Erdogan’s office said in a statement published by the Turkish website Sabah and translated by Al Monitor. “We came to [the] conclusion that in order to relieve our citizens, there is no way left beyond blocking Twitter, which disregards court orders, does not obey the rule of law.”

At a daily press briefing on Thursday, U.S. State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki said: “As we have previously stated, we remain very concerned by any suggestion that social media sites could be shut down. Democracies are strengthened by the diversity of public voices.

“An independent and unfettered media is an essential element of democratic, open societies, and crucial to ensuring official transparency and accountability”

As the news spread, Twitter offered users a way to bypass the ban by tweeting via text message.

Turkish users: you can send Tweets using SMS. Avea and Vodafone text START to 2444. Turkcell text START to 2555.

Twitter users in Turkey and abroad immediately shared information on how to bypass the ban via SMS and VPN. From inside Turkey,#TwitterIsBlockedInTurkey and #DictatorErdoganbegan to trend within hours.


#twitter blocked in #turkey tonight. folks are painting #google dns numbers onto the posters of the governing party.

In spite of ‘block’ there have been 272K tweets using#TwitterisblockedinTurkey in past 3hrs. 207K of those from Turkey itself.

Erdogan – who is currently fighting corruption allegations and waves of anti-government protests – has made repeated threats against social media users. Memes mocking the embattled Erdogan and his latest media crackdown also circulated widely.


12 milyon kullanጜısı olan #Twitter'a erişim engellendi! Dünyada sadece 2 ülkede yasak!


a list of apps on an average turkish phone. in case.


All these jokes/pics about death of Twitter in Turkey? I see them all from tweeps tweeting FROM Turkey.RT @DTJ_Online


"So?.. What’s wrong? Everyone is still tweeting…"

Source: Miriam Berger for Buzzfeed

(via marsian-night)


Author Tim Wu explains the importance of net neutrality on the Colbert Report.


A federal appeals court just struck down the FCC’s Open Internet Order protecting net neutrality—which means that companies like Verizon can now block or slow different websites if they want to. 

This is a big deal. Here’s why it matters, and what can be done about it, via Free Press 

Over the last decade, net neutrality has increasingly made its way into public discourse: politicians on Capitol Hill have battled over it, corporations have worked to curb it and public interest advocates have fought to preserve it. In September, the fight to keep the Internet free and open found its way to the DC’s Circuit Court of Appeals, where Verizon is attempting to overturn the Federal Communications Commission’s current net neutrality regulations. Verizon vs. FCC, which could be decided as soon as this month, is the latest and arguably most important battle to protect the Internet from censorship and discrimination. But what is net neutrality? And what could this case mean for the future of the Internet? We’ve put together this explainer to catch you up.

What is net neutrality?

Network neutrality, or net neutrality, is a term first coined by technology policy scholar Tim Wu to describe the preservation of online innovation by prohibiting companies from discriminating against some users and content, or prioritizing some content over others. It guarantees a level playing field in which Internet users do not have to pay Internet service providers more for better access to online content, and content generators do not have to pay additional fees to ensure users can access their websites or apps.

By the way, what is an Internet service provider?

An Internet service provider, or ISP, is a company or organization that sells you access to the Internet. These companies, like Comcast, Verizon, Time Warner Cable or CenturyLink, do not own the Internet, they just provide the infrastructure needed to access it, like underground fiber optic cables. It’s a lot like how your local water company doesn’t actually own the water you use, they just own the water pipes.

Is net neutrality a new concept?

No. The first innovators of the Word Wide Web intended for Internet to be non-discriminatory and fair to all users. Tim Berners-Lee, the inventor of the Web, is a staunch supporter of net neutrality regulation and frequently makes public critiques of companies who aim to violate it.

Now, what happens without net neutrality?

Without net neutrality, your Internet service provider could block or slow online content, depending on which websites or apps they wish to preference. For example, an ISP might speed up your access to, but slow or degrade your access to They could also charge different prices for different content. An ISP might charge more to host last week’s episode of Parks and Recreation than to feature an article about it. Internet service providers could also charge fees to Internet companies for providing that content to you. They might, for example, begin charging Netflix a fee for carrying online video over its network, which it likely will pass on along to its customers.


Has anyone in the US attempted to establish net neutrality rules?

Yes, the FCC issued an Internet policy statement in September 2005 that attempted to ensure ISPs “operated in a neutral manner” by offering consumers choice in content, providers and devices. But because it was merely a policy statement, it came with no enforceable rules. In 2006, Republican Senator Ted Stevens of Alaska introduced a failed bill that would have prohibited ISPs from blocking traffic or applications. It would have also tasked the FCC with studying net neutrality for five years and handling net neutrality complaints.

What movement on net neutrality has happened since Obama took office?

The FCC shifted to the left after Obama’s 2008 campaign, which included a net neutrality platform. Obama appointed Julius Genachowski, a lawyer and media businessman who had previously served on the campaign’s technology policy working group, as the commission’s new chairman in 2009. With a new, more liberal chairman and a pro-net neutrality president in office, the FCC began the process of introducing net neutrality rules in October of 2009. In August of 2010, Google and Verizon released a joint policy proposal intended for the FCC as a framework for net neutrality rules, emphasizing self-regulation on broadband Internet. This proposal called for stricter net neutrality regulations on wired Internet services than on wireless Internet services and extremely limited regulation from the Commission. Four months later, in December 2010, the FCC adopted the Open Internet Order by a 3-2 vote. The order, which instituted relatively light net neutrality rules, imposed stricter rules on wired Internet services and weaker rules on wireless services, just as the Google and Verizon proposal had suggested.

What are the rules in the FCC’s Open Internet Order?

Wired Internet service providers, like your broadband Internet at home, are prohibited from blocking content, must disclose their network management practices, terms and conditions and are prohibited from prioritizing some traffic over others. On the other hand, mobile broadband providers, like your cell phone carrier or wireless internet provider, are only required to disclose their network management practices and terms and conditions of their service. These orders fell short of public interest goals to protect consumers, as people are increasingly accessing the Internet via mobile devices. But they also extended too far for some conservative congress members and companies, like Verizon.

Why did Verizon take the FCC to court over net neutrality?

Shortly after the order was instituted in 2011, Verizon sued the FCC saying that the commission does not have regulatory authority to impose net neutrality rules on any Internet Service Provider. After two years of legal filings, oral arguments for Verizon vs. FCC began in the US Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit in September.

h/t: Leticia Miranda at The Nation

NEW YORK, NY – Yahoo announced a $1.1 billion deal for blogging site Tumblr early Monday, and said it “promises not to screw it up.”

The deal, which had been rumored since last Thursday, will help Yahoo to tap into the younger, active online user base at Tumblr. But the deal raises concerns among some Tumblr fans that the site could end up being cluttered by the ads that brings in billions of dollars a year to Yahoo. Tumblr CEO and founder David Karp has resisted the use of traditional display advertising on Tumblr to this point.

To answer those worries, Yahoo said that Tumblr will be independently operated as a separate business with Karp staying on as CEO. Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer posted her own Tumblr post to try to assure fans of the site they need not panic. In a call with investors and analysts Monday, Mayer referred to the deal as a “game changer” for Yahoo. She said there will be no Yahoo branding on Tumblr.

But while she sought to assure Tumblr bloggers and readers that the site will stay the way they like it, she also promised analysts that the deal will give Yahoo a chance to “monetize” Tumblr in a way that “is meaningful … to the user experience.”

Karp also sought to assure Tumblr bloggers.

“Our team isn’t changing. Our roadmap isn’t changing,” said Karp in a statement. “Tumblr gets better faster with more resources to draw from.”


The Religious Right went into a frenzy this week over charges that the military was deliberately blocking access to, the official website of the Southern Baptist Convention’s, as part of an anti-Christian ploy.

“What we are seeing here, I want to be very clear here, we are seeing under the Obama administration a Christian cleansing underway in the United States military,” Fox News’ Starnes maintained.

David Limbaugh accused the military of acting like a “thought police” who “selectively suppress[es] First Amendment freedoms” that “our armed forces are charged to protect,” and the SBC’s top ethicist Richard Land said it was an “outrageous” move and the person who blocked the website “needs to be fired.”

The American Family Association called the incident an example of the military’s “hostility towards faith and religious freedom” and its spokesman Bryan Fischer claimed it was part of an Islamist-secularist conspiracy to classify the entire denomination as a “hate group that spews nothing but ‘hostile content.’” was in fact blocked, but not as a result of anti-Christian bias, but because of malware on the SBC’s website.

Don’t just take our word for it, the Baptist Press, the news arm of the Southern Baptist Convention, reported that “the military’s software filters detected malware at and blocked the website.” Due to malware, not the content of the website, was considered “hostile content.”

But don’t hold your breath for Land or Fischer to retract their inflammatory claims.


What is making the right-wing mouthpieces angry today? It is the fact that the Southern Baptist Convention (SBC)’s website was blocked on some military bases.

The Tennesseean:

The website for the Southern Baptist Convention has been blocked from some US Army computers.

That’s caused some conservative activists to accuse the Pentagon of being hostile to religion.

Ties between conservative evangelicals and the military have been strong in the past. But the repeal of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” and other recent incidents have strained those ties.

A Southern Baptist spokesman said that he spoke to Army officials who confirmed that some computers have blocked access to SBC.Net

Those officials say the problem is a glitch, said Roger “Sing” Oldham, convention spokesman.

Even SBC spokesman Sing Oldham admits the the site’s blocking as accidental, but according to the conservative minsinformation chamber, the incident was viewed as “sinister,” “anti-Christian,” and even “pandering to Islamists.”

Right-Wing Reactions:
Todd Starnes, Fixed Noise Radio:

The U.S. Military has blocked access to the Southern Baptist Convention’s website on an unknown number of military bases because it contains “hostile content” — just weeks after an Army briefing labeled Evangelical Christians and Roman Catholics as examples of religious extremism, Fox News has learned.

The censorship was made public after an Army officer tried to log onto the denomination’s website and instead — received a warning message.
“The site you have requested has been blocked by Team CONUS (C-TNOSC/RCERT-CONUS) due to hostile content,” the message read.
Team CONUS protects the computer network of the Dept. of Defense. The SBC’s website was not blocked at the Pentagon.
It’s unclear what the “hostile content” might have been. The SBC is pro-life and opposed to same-sex marriage.

Bryan Fischer, host of AFA Radio’s Focal Point:

Bryan Fischer has produced the latest anti-Christian conspiracy theory and of course rather than do any research, rather than do anything as simple as picking up the phone or sending an email, he’s decided to go on the air to tell his million or so listeners about this latest “attack” on their religious rights by their government.

In this video, below, Fischer explains that he has “breaking news,” that the U.S. government is blocking access from military or government personnel to the Southern Baptist Convention’s homepage. The SBC is the nation’s second-largest Christian group, after Roman Catholics, and they boast about 16 million members, or about five percent of the nation’s population.

By the end of the video clip, Fischer has convinced himself that this seems like a vast government conspiracy to label the Southern Baptist Convention a “hate group,” making the giant leap from “hostile content” to “hate group.”

“Basically, the U.S. military has classified the Southern Baptist Convention as a hate group — the entire denomination,” Fischer repeatedly cries, adding, “it’s like porn.”

Lucianne Goldberg, founder of

Was access to Islamic radical websites also blocked? I would sure be more concerned about that! The DOD is working diligently to investigate what might be causing access issues. Uh huh.

AFA Action Alert:

This is just another example of the Christian faith coming under attack in the military. Earlier this month, an Army email listed prominent Christian ministries like the Family Research Council and American Family Association as “domestic hate groups.”

Here are some of the more out there comments on that site:

Actually, it seems that some U.S. Army officers are hostile to the Southern Baptist Convention. - righttackle44

Muslims good, Christians bad. -  E. Pluribus Unum

Military chaplains and bibles in the foxhole have a long history. Now because sodomites are celebrated by a corrupt culture, sin has been redefined by the government. That is still prohibited by the First Amendment. - a fool in paradise

but not a negative word about Islam.

Time for Christians and conservatives to not join the military and to advise their relatives not to. - GeronL

They’re getting this information from the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC). A very far Left Wing outfit that labels any and everything conservative a hate group. The SPLC is now a traning contractor for the US government.

Originally hired by “Big Sis” Napolitano, Secretary of Homeland Security, who claimed military veterans were potential terrorists deemed watching by DHS, the SPLC is now training the entire FedGov.

Write your Congressman! The SPLC contract HAS TO GO! - Alas Babylon!

The comments on that page are what you would expect— blaming it on Muslims, gays, liberals, Obama, et al.

Ken Kluklowski at’s Big Government:

Lt. Col. Damien Pickart insists the Pentagon is not intentionally blocking access for Southern Baptists but has not provided any official explanation for the multiple reports of the military blocking access to Southern Baptist material. On its face, this looks like a brazen show of hostility by the Obama administration against devout Christians in the U.S. military.
Breitbart News legal columnist Ken Klukowski is senior fellow for religious liberty at the Family Research Council.

Today on AFR’s Focal Point, Bryan Fischer hosted Todd Starnes on this topic. As expected, it’s full of complaining that “Muslims have more rights than [Conservative] Christians in this country” crap.

The right will continue to declare this an “intentional sabotage of our Christian freedoms,” but the fact is this: the Southern Baptist Convention’s website getting blocked is more likely to be a glitch. Flip the story for a second: If it was Planned Parenthood, Media Matters, Alternet, pro-LGBTQ sites, or this very site getting blocked on the bases, the right would cheer it.

(cross-posted from Daily Kos


Justice Alito finds an excuse not to rule on same-sex marriage: it’s too new. “You want us to step in and render a decision based on an assessment of the effects of this institution which is newer than cellphones or the internet?”


8 Things Justice Alito Has Ruled on That Are Newer Than Cellphones and the Internet

(via truth-has-a-liberal-bias)

Net Neutrality forever!