Monday, July 16, 2007

Orkut to be banned in Kuwait?

This post stems from the article I read this morning in the Arab Times stating that the Ministry of Information plans on banning acess to the popular community networking site in the near future. Are these guys for real? Afte the governments of Iran, Saudi Arabia (no surprises there) and the UAE (surprisingly) Kuwait is soon to follow apparently.

Orkut is a communitiy based website similar to hi5 and facebook that enables users to post profiles, comments and network. A lof of my friends and other people I know have actually got in touch with lost friends through this website and it's one of the most popular sites in the world especially since it was bought by Google earlier this year.

The governments mentioned above are supposedly afraid of the content that is posted on this website and the fact that users can create multiple profiles and this may lead to fraud, racism and probably propogation of violence and hate groups. Seeing that the internet is one big cauldron of information that can by and large be controlled by users, I don't see the point in banning a site like orkut. What the government does not realize is that there are ways to control this sort of thing. Perhaps they can poilce the site and restrict access to objectionable content. It beats banning access to the site completely. Come to think of it no site or community on the internet is safe from this. That doesnt mean you're going to ban the internet entirely does it?


Rubick said...

U can call me a pessimist but it was only a matter of time.The kind of things seldom last in countries like Kuwait or Saudi Arabia.U should make the best of it while it lasts people.

Rukick said...

Bedies I don't use any of those sites anyway.

BarryUno said...

It's not like I'm really going to miss the sites or anything. In fact apart from hi5 I don't have a profile on either orkut or facebook. The point was not about the sites or their purpose but the fact that the governments in the countries mentioned do not even think twice before deciding on imposing bans on accesing them. Everything they think may be bad for society is banned. An interesting analogy would be a parent pampering a child to the extent that he or she can not fend for himself/herself once they're out in the big bad world! (this requires a seperate post)

Lord Raj said...
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Lord Raj said...

this wont be the first time.. n neither the last time that a government (not this country or region specific) has come up with somethin stupid.

in ma opinion, this is not for public protection or whateva.. but merely a gesture to appease a certain section of the parliament or somethin along those lines.

the more this gets highlighted (in print or media).. the worse it gets. u wouldnt have said anythin, if this didnt appear in the papers.. u dont even use the site, but u see, it has u talkin now.

secondly.. its not like its the end of the world.. there is a way out. its called - simply put - usin a proxy.

end of story.

when there is a way out, why bother makin so much noise. n its not like this is somethin new. the work around has been available for ages. the users know it, the isps know it, n so do the people pressin for the ban.

n finally.. abt policin the net n the sites .. n objectionable content n all that.. well im against any form of censorship whatsoeva... im pretty much an anarchist - by some definitions, depends on perception.. in ma view, true democracy is equivalent of anarchy.. n any form of democracy, which is NOT anarchy is not democracy at all. restricted freedom is NO FREEDOM

but then.. thats jus ma view. like i said, it all depends on perception.

now..let em go ahead n bann whateva they want. people who wanna do things still do.

dont people manage to get their hands on booze in kuwait? (if someone says NO, then he needs to get a reality check).. now.. isnt booze "BANNED" so to speak.

there u get ma point.

further more... the more the media (print or tele) talks abt it, the more agitation it will cause in the general public.. n in all likelihood will cause the initiators of this stupid notion to pursue it with renewed enthusiasm.

u see.. PROTESTIN can work either ways. n in ma opinion, the people who have proposed or initiated this idea are the ones with egos bigger than the mt. evrest. n for these people, a protest against their views is only gonna make em want to implement this even more.

ma point is... all these stunts come n go.. hell a while back in delhi, all the isps were instructed to block all traffic directed to BLOG sites!!!

there is a work around.. n as long as that exists, there is no reason to get worked up over some stupid appeasement stunt.

in a perfect world this wouldnt have happened.. but this isnt a perfect world.. forget abt perfect, most of this world isnt even sensible.

Flaming carrot said...

Hah. I'm not insanely irate because I dont have an Orkut account.

Funny bit is, myspace is the royal height of perversion but no hullaballoo about that. Myspace allows you to accost strangers easier than any other community does. Oh well. I actually like it, so hope it lasts.

BarryUno said...

Raj is right in a lot of ways I suppose. Then again my point wasn't to find alternatives to things (I am known to be resourceful and know how to get what I want even in a place like Kuwait) but to deride the initiators of this Fascist farce. Why orkut in particular? Don't ask me. My guess is someone got on to the site and found something he didn't like and just assumed the whole site was bad for the general public, called his friends in the ministry and got them to start this whole "ban orkut" operation. The guys at the ministry in the meanwhile jumped at the opportunity of finally having something interesting to do (talk about leading mundane empty lives harrassing people for non-payment of bills etc.) and started garnering protests.

Either way there are a million ways to bypass the bans and im sure people will continue using the site.

In response to raj's comment saying any form of censorship isn't a democracy (who said Kuwait was a democracy anyway?), the point I was trying to make was that the government could have done somethng alternatively (like offer to police the site etc.) instead of just deciding to ban it in one go. Looks like "thinking outside the box" will never get underway here! ;-)

Lord Raj said...

Good points Barry.

Thinkin out of the box.. well not only here, but lots of places mate.. that will have to wait.

n i completely agree with ur view on how a ban on ORKUT might have come abt.. n i have included that in ma comment too

in ma opinion, this is not for public protection or whateva.. but merely a gesture to appease a certain section of the parliament or somethin along those lines.

but.. look at the bright side.. WE GOT SOMETHIN TO TALK ABT N POST ABT :)

there is always a silver linin.. jus have to wanna see it. ;)

BarryUno said...

Silver lining? Absolutely mate! Speaking of silver lining on posts, we've got to get together some day. How else would we exchange contacts? ;-) If you're wondering what contacts, read on....

BTW I know it's not that difficult but I want to get my hands on some "bat-juice" (if you know what I mean!

Lord Raj said...

i DO know what u mean :)

email address?

Lord Raj said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Lord Raj said...

BTW.. u might wanna edit the link for "Maze of thoughts"

the second "http//" needs to go, in order for the link to point to a valid page.

BarryUno said...

Edited the link mate. Thanks for the heads-up.

My email address is

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