Turkey chains social media

Image: © dianaduda - Fotolia.com
Image: © dianaduda – Fotolia.com

In Turkey, Twitter, Facebook and other social media are subject to stricter controls. The Turkish parliament passed a highly controversial law on Wednesday, requiring platforms, among other things, to respond to requests to remove or block certain content within 48 hours, according to the Anadolu news agency. Critics have announced that they will appeal to the Constitutional Court against the law.

According to the report, providers with more than one million Turkish users daily also have to open branches in Turkey with a Turkish citizen as their representative. Representation by a legal person is also possible. If they fail to comply with the regulations, they face severe fines and restrictions on services in the country. The law was criticized in advance.

If content on the Internet violates rules applicable in Turkey, future representatives in the country face criminal charges, said Internet expert Yaman Akdeniz of the German Press Agency. On Twitter, he announced that the law would be brought before the constitutional court. There are already strong restrictions on the Internet. Because many providers do not have a seat in the country, obligations such as storing user data have so far simply been avoided.

The organization Reporters Without Borders had previously announced that the government was trying to control “the last refuge for critical journalists in Turkey”. Turkish media are largely under the direct or indirect control of the government, and control over content on the Internet has been strengthened again and again.

“We aim to end the insult, abuse on social media and the harassment caused by this medium,” said Özlem Zengin, deputy group leader of the ruling AKP, previously defended the law.

President Recep Tayyip Erdogan announced in early July that there would be greater control over social media: “These channels, which are teeming with lies, insults, attacks on personal rights and murders, must be regulated,” said Erdogan.

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  • Law-law-gavel: © dianaduda – Fotolia.com

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