Thai government censors Internet for 'national security'

Sylvie Barak
The Inquirer
Thursday, Sept 4, 2008

SHOWING THE WORLD what it really thinks about all this democracy rubbish, the Thai government has decided to close down and block over 1600 websites, purportedly in the name of national security.

Mun Patanotai, Thailand's Information and Communications Technology Minister, yesterday petitioned his country’s courts to close down some 400 Websites which apparently "disturbed the peaceful social order and morality of the people, and/or which were considered detrimental to national security", whilst pressuring ISP’s to block a further 1200.

The sudden dramatic concern for national security seems to have arisen at exactly the same time the Thai authorities were forced to declare a state of emergency in the country, as thousands of protestors, demanding the Government stand down, took to the streets yesterday.

A purported 344 of the 400 websites were shut down for being mean to the Thai royal family – who obviously aren’t all that good at dealing with their annus horribilises. Two more sites deemed problematic were of a religious nature, whilst another contained a sex video game and five more were simply labeled ‘obscene’.

We don’t mean to sound preachy, but perhaps if Thai premiere, Samak Sundaravej was just a little less concerned about his citizens’ cyber sex and monarchial moanings, and just a tad more concerned with running his country properly, Thai protestors wouldn’t be quite so angry. Just a thought.


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