Just last week Turkish Prime Minister, Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, embed a nation wide blockade on twitter. Just six days later Prime Minister Erdoğan has censored and blocked all access to YouTube.
As of Thursday, March 27, YouTube.com is fully censored in Turkey. Turkish citizens started reporting the block after 10:30 a.m. ET. The ban was ordered on Thursday (March 27) after leaked recordings of a security meeting were published on YouTube, according to Hurriyet Daily News. Leaked calls recorded a high-level security meeting on the topic of Syria and were released through YouTube, leaked content vowed to impose the “heaviest penalty” on the perpetrators of such “treachery.”
Turkey has agreed it may lift the ban if YouTube agrees to remove the leaked content, said an insider report at Reuters. It is unclear if Google will agree to remove the content, as Google refused to remove videos of alleged government corruption just last week.
The video that led to the blackout of YouTube in Turkey was uploaded by an anonymous user, Reuters reported. The video is suggested to be an audio clip from a recording of an official meeting among Turkey’s intelligence chief, the foreign minister, and the deputy head of the armed forces, to discuss potential military operations against Syria, Mashable reported.
This is not the first time YouTube has been blocked in Turkey. Back in 2007 a Turkish court implemented a blockade of the services after a video insulting the founder of Turkey, Mustafa Kemal Ataturk, was uploaded to YouTube.
Turkish Prime Minister, Erdoğan, threatened to block YouTube and Facebook just last week, after “eradicating” Twitter. Erdoğan is forcing the implementation on all Turkish ISP’s at a DNS level. This means the block can be easily circumvented with simple tools online.
While Twitter was blocked at a DNS level, Turkish citizens escaping the blockade lashed out, since, Turkey implemented the Twitter blockade at an IP level, making it a little tougher to circumvent. There are still numerous ways to escape the censorship.
YouTube is currently blocked at a DNS level, according to Telecomix, an internet monitoring firm. This means the block is “partial” and some users can still access YouTube in Turkey.
Twitter has filed a lawsuit regarding the censorship, and is demanding the ban on Twitter be lifted. Google has not commented as of yet, as the ban was just implemented today.
I am in Turkey, how can I still access YouTube? If you reside in Turkey there are numerous simple ways to circumvent government censorship and internet blockades. Encrypting your internet with a VPN can easily get any around government censorship. Or the TOR Network can also help get around government restrictions. A VPN is recommended as they are faster, and can do far more.