Turkey to ‘Blur’ Twitter Posts to Cover Up ‘Malicious Content’

Text and images on Twitter may soon appear blurred and pixelated to hide 'offensive content'


ANKARA (Hurriyet Daily News)—Turkey’s telecommunications authorities will pixelate Twitter posts to eliminate “malicious content,” Communications Minister Lütfi Elvan said in a written statement Thursday, following talks between the microblogging website’s executives and Turkish officials in Ankara.

“We have reached a consensus to ‘neutralize’ malicious content that is the object of court decisions by pixelating. [Twitter executives] also said the presence of a lawyer representing them would contribute to solving the current issues,” Elvan said in the statement.

He confirmed that Twitter had not made any final decisions regarding other subjects, including the opening of a company office in Turkey.

“During the meeting, the opening of a liaison office in Turkey to ensure closer coordination, as well as the conferring of authority for ‘super tagging’ to Turkey’s telecommunication directorate [TİB] was discussed. But Twitter executives said they would not immediately decide on these issues and could reconvene after assessing it in a meeting at their headquarters,” Elvan said in the statement.

He also said the meeting reflected the “good will” of both sides. “We have agreed to keep in touch in the future to solve possible problems that can arise quickly and effectively,” he added.

‘Twitter deleted over 200 pieces of content’
Elvan claimed that Twitter executives had issued assurances that over 200 pieces of content had been deleted and five court orders executed in line with the Turkish authorities’ demands. He also added that Twitter had prepared a complaint application method to report problematic content, also translated into Turkish, and vowed to be more “meticulous” in the future regarding fake accounts.

Twitter’s woes in Turkey did not end after the Constitutional Court ordered the unblocking of access to the website on April 2, as it was soon accused of “tax evasion” by Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan.

Following the first formal meetings in Ankara, officials said Twitter executives had assured that they would be “more sensitive” and “more responsive” to Turkish court rulings in the future, but had not agreed beforehand to meet all the demands of the Turkish government.

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2 Comments

  1. Norin Radd said:

    Where is the condemnation from the US/EU? Had it been Iran blocking YouTube and blurring twitter and setting up alternative ISP receiving servers to intercept online traffic the EU/US would be dancing on Iran’s testicles regarding the matter? But since it’s Turkey then it’s okay right?

    Classic Eu/US values at work here…..

  2. Armenian said:

    These people are so backwards, it’s almost frightening that such a nation has that many resources at their disposal.

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