India also blocks controversial video on YouTube

Google has said the video which is also blocked in Pakistan and Afghanistan does not violate its guidelines for content on YouTube

India has also blocked a controversial YouTube film trailer that mocks the Prophet Muhammad, a source at the Internet Service Providers Association of India said Friday.

The video which sparked protests at U.S. missions in Libya, Egypt, and Yemen earlier this week, was to be blocked in Pakistan on Thursday. Aimal Faizi, a spokesman for Afghanistan president Hamid Karzai, said on Tuesday in a Twitter message that the YouTube video would be blocked in the country, though the video-sharing site would not be blocked.

The authenticity of the full film, "Innocence of Muslims" has been called into question since protests outside U.S. embassies began, but the trailer has continued to circulate on the Internet and by Thursday had 1.3 million views on YouTube.

"We received the order from the government on Thursday to block links to the video on YouTube," said the ISPAI source who declined to be named. The trailer was not accessible on Friday in India through most ISPs.

India and other countries are taking decisions to block the trailer through local Internet service providers, as Google has said the video, which is widely available on the Web, is clearly within its guidelines and so will stay on YouTube.

The Internet company however drew an exception in Egypt and Libya, stating that given the very difficult situation in these countries it had temporarily restricted access in both countries. U.S. Ambassador to Libya Chris Stevens and three other Americans were killed when a diplomatic post in Benghazi, Libya, was stormed by gunmen.

"We have orders from the ministry of IT and communications to block whatever links are there to this video clip," a spokesman for the Pakistan Telecommunication Authority said on Wednesday.

India has a long-standing dispute with Internet companies over the availability online of content it considers objectionable. The government is worried that controversial religious content could trigger communal violence. But civil rights groups claim the government wants to stifle political dissent. Many Internet companies typically argue that the websites are run by their parent companies in the U.S., and not by the Indian operations.

In December, the country's Minister for Communications, Kapil Sibal, said that some of the Internet companies were allowing content that would fail to live up to the laws that they are enforcing in their own country by their own community standards. The controversy resurfaced last month when some thousands of people from the northeast fled cities like Bangalore to go back home after warnings online and through SMS (short message service) that they would be attacked by Muslims in retaliation for attacks against them by local people in Assam.

John Ribeiro covers outsourcing and general technology breaking news from India for The IDG News Service. Follow John on Twitter at @Johnribeiro. John's e-mail address is john_ribeiro@idg.com

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

John Ribeiro

IDG News Service

Comments

Comments are now closed.

Most Popular Reviews

Follow Us

Best Deals on GoodGearGuide

Shopping.com

Latest News Articles

Resources

GGG Evaluation Team

Kathy Cassidy

STYLISTIC Q702

First impression on unpacking the Q702 test unit was the solid feel and clean, minimalist styling.

Anthony Grifoni

STYLISTIC Q572

For work use, Microsoft Word and Excel programs pre-installed on the device are adequate for preparing short documents.

Steph Mundell

LIFEBOOK UH574

The Fujitsu LifeBook UH574 allowed for great mobility without being obnoxiously heavy or clunky. Its twelve hours of battery life did not disappoint.

Andrew Mitsi

STYLISTIC Q702

The screen was particularly good. It is bright and visible from most angles, however heat is an issue, particularly around the Windows button on the front, and on the back where the battery housing is located.

Simon Harriott

STYLISTIC Q702

My first impression after unboxing the Q702 is that it is a nice looking unit. Styling is somewhat minimalist but very effective. The tablet part, once detached, has a nice weight, and no buttons or switches are located in awkward or intrusive positions.

Latest Jobs

Shopping.com

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?