CCIA Deeply Concerned by Turkish Government Threat to Block Internet Services, Social Media

Date

11 Mar 2014

Sections

InfoSociety

Press release

Brussels/Geneva --  CCIA was, like many others, troubled to hear reports yesterday that the Government of Turkey is considering widespread additional restrictions on social media and major Internet services. This was especially concerning given that legislation passed only weeks ago put the Internet under greater governmental control through measures including allowing the Turkish telecoms regulator to block websites without a judicial decision.

The following may be attributed to CCIA Brussels Director Jakob Kucharczyk:

“The developments in Turkey are disappointing as they follow years of more Internet openness in Turkey and growing Internet usage for everything from information gathering to political commentary. In our modern, digitally connected world, to which also Turkey belongs, these sites play a very important role for citizens to express their opinions and political views. Blocking them won’t eliminate criticism. From the perspective of the digital economy, threats like these will create legal and economic uncertainty and damage the attractiveness of Turkey for both inward investment and home-grown entrepreneurship.”

The following may be attributed to Nick Ashton-Hart, CCIA’s Geneva Representative:

“The Internet cannot solve, just as it cannot create, social problems, but regulating the Internet in order to try is as popular in countries worldwide as it is unsuccessful. It would be quite tragic if Turkey were to return to policies that block or limit Internet services since previous measures like this did not actually eliminate access to the very materials that provoked them. There’s no reason to believe attempts now would be any more successful than past efforts were.”

 

About CCIA:

CCIA is an international, nonprofit association representing a broad cross section of computer, communications and Internet industry firms. CCIA remains dedicated, as it has for over 40 years, to promoting innovation and preserving full, fair and open competition throughout our industry. Our members employ more than 600,000 workers and generate annual revenues in excess of $200 billion. For more, please go to: www.ccianet.org

 

Contact:

Heather Greenfield +1 202-783-0070 ext 113

Ed Black +1 202-783-0070 ext 110

James Waterworth +32 2 234 7869