YouTube Ban is Imminent (again) in Turkey

Flash News: last updated on 04.11.2010: entry by Dr. Yaman Akdeniz: Despite the earlier news that Turkey has lifted its ban on YouTube after almost 2.5 years, YouTube reinstated the four videos that were removed by a licensing agency in Germany. YouTube, in a statement circulated in Turkish late Monday night stated that the four videos did not violate its copyright violation policy and therefore they were put back into the system.

I did verify the statement and the four videos are available where they were used to be available. YouTube also announced that it continues to use a “local blocking system” and therefore Turkish users will not be able to see these videos from Turkey if YouTube remains accessible from Turkey. However, those videos will be available and accessible from outside Turkey.

It remains to be seen how the Turkish authorities will react to this action by YouTube but I strongly suspect that they will issue a new injunction to block access to YouTube.

So far, and as of 03.11.2010 no ban has been enforced on YouTube despite several misleading stories in Turkey and elsewhere. There was an attempt at banning YouTube by the lawyers of Deniz Baykal, the former leader of CHP, the opposition party yesterday. However, the allegedly obscene videos involving Baykal and his former mistress were removed from YouTube servers as they were deemed to be sexually explicit. As a result of YouTube’s removal of those videos the court injunction to block access to YouTube was not enforced.

There is no update to report as of 04.11.2010 but YouTube remained accessible for another day.

This entry will be updated as the story develops….