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Kuwait Blocks YouTube?????

Kuwait blocks Youtube
Published Date: September 22, 2008
By Jamie Etheridge

KUWAIT: The Ministry of Communication has issued a memo to all internet service providers in Kuwait asking them to block YouTube access. The popular video website came under fire from the ministry due to content considered offensive to Muslims, a source within the industry told Kuwait Times. The Ministry pointed to content including a video of a man signing verses from the Holy Quran while playing the oud and another video showing caricatures of the Prophet Mohammad (PBUH).

A Fasttelco source confirmed receipt of the memo. “It’s supposed to be blocked right now. But due to technical preparations the blocking may take until tomorrow [Monday],” said the source. The site was still accessible yesterday evening. The Ministry of Communication regularly issues memos to ISPs asking them to block certain websites, including those containing pornographic photos or ones like Skype that can be used to make international phone calls over the Internet.

YouTube is widely used in Kuwait. A search of the word ‘Kuwait’ turned up 59,000 videos, including everything from videos of car crashes on Fahaheel Expressway and Jessica Simpson’s concert for US troops in Kuwait to protests in front of Abdullah Al-Salem hall in the run up to the 2006 parliamentary elections.

You can read the entire article at Kuwait Times.

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September 22, 2008 - Posted by | Bureaucracy, Communication, Community, Cross Cultural, Entertainment, ExPat Life, Family Issues, Free Speech, Kuwait, Living Conditions, Social Issues, Technical Issue

13 Comments »

  1. with all due respect to these people, I think they are stupid if they do.. they can block that certain person who uploaded that stupid video, I mean you tube does it

    Comment by chika | September 22, 2008 | Reply

  2. What??? How i am suppose to live now ?

    Comment by Grey | September 22, 2008 | Reply

  3. its Still working on Zain ..

    Comment by Grey | September 22, 2008 | Reply

  4. This is another Don Quixotic attempt by Ministry of Miscommunication to fight against the Tide of Internet Age .
    I think the idea is to block an avenue for free expression as the YouTube was used in the last national assembly election to settle scores between the competing sides as well as the fights that raged on the blogs.
    i wonder if there is an annual world freemdom of the internet survey so we can see the level of each country .

    Also the minster of communication has signed a petition calling indirectly for unconstitutional dissolvement of parliament . What a genius , lets hope we see the back of this man before too long and hopefully the cancellation of this ministry which we really dont need in this age of fast inexpensive open comnuincation

    One of the best things the Americans did in Iraq after entering Baghdad was to abolish the ministry of information which led to free press regardless of whether we like it or not.

    Comment by daggero | September 22, 2008 | Reply

  5. The ministry has supposedly canceled the order. But the ISPs never even tried to block it. Maybe they knew the order would get revoked?

    Comment by Q8gypsy | September 22, 2008 | Reply

  6. Thats is really sad.. and pathetic! I dont know how their minds operate when passing such laws/decisions! They just took the negative side and ignored all the rest! Its a shame! Backward thinking! God knows whats next!!!

    Comment by Ansam | September 22, 2008 | Reply

  7. Classic!

    Comment by Bashar | September 22, 2008 | Reply

  8. I think we should block those ppl from existing.

    Comment by Chirp | September 22, 2008 | Reply

  9. Chika – it’s hard to fathom their decision-making process.

    Grey – I don’t know what I have, but it’s still working for me, too!

    Oh Daggero, didn’t you just love the Baghdadi Minister of Information? Kept insisting they were winning, even as the city was overtaken? It was black comedy. I hope this order is as effective as that blocking the VOIP phones that keep us in touch with our families.

    Q8Gypsy – oh! That would be good news indeed! Did someone overturn the order or was the order rescinded (called back by the person who originally made the decision?) Thank you for the good news!

    Ansam – So far mine is still working!

    Bashar – you were much more eloquent than I. I was just thinking “how can this be??”

    Comment by intlxpatr | September 22, 2008 | Reply

  10. Chirp -( We must have been commenting at the same time, sorry I missed you. )
    Honestly, I feel sorry for people who think they can supress the free flow of ideas in this day and age.

    Comment by intlxpatr | September 22, 2008 | Reply

  11. Um, are they familiar with youtube’s feature in flagging offending/inappropriate videos? I mean seriously!

    Comment by Shaymaa | September 22, 2008 | Reply

  12. I just heard that the plan has been canceled to block you tube 🙂

    Comment by Amu | September 22, 2008 | Reply

  13. No kidding, Shaymaa! Things are posted and taken off very quickly when people find them offensive. Maybe they didn’t have all that information when they requested the ban.

    Amu – I’ve heard that too – via the blogs and commenters – and I would love to see it in writing.

    Comment by intlxpatr | September 23, 2008 | Reply


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