Turkey not banning all Google services, simply clumsily trying to block YouTube

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There were several reports this morning about Turkish authorities blocking most if not all Google services, but it turns out there’s some confusion on the matter.

We’ve learned that Turkey’s Telecommunication and Communication Ministry (TIB), a government body that oversees Internet accessibility in the country, is attempting a blanket ban of a range of IP addresses belonging to Google in an effort to stop people from visiting YouTube.

According to our sources, this move was made because Google altered the IP addresses for the popular Internet video service.

In an attempt to ban those IPs for ‘legal reasons’, the Turkish government appear to have also blocked access to IPs Google uses for other popular services, such as Docs, Analytics, Translate and Books, among many others. Many of them are inaccessible or at least very slow for Turkish Internet users.

It also seems like the authorities are placing the blame on Google and are telling citizens that it’s up to the company to fix the situation.

The Google service accessibility problems started Tuesday night and continue throughout today. Turkey has been blocking access to YouTube since March 2007.

  • http://pimpyou.co.uk PIMPYOU

    What’s up in turkey its not europe anymore or what?

    • tar

      since when was Turkey Europe ?

  • http://jiggymotto.com/default/turkish-government-blocking-access-to-google-sites Turkish Government Blocking Access to Google Sites « jiggymotto.com

    […] Update: According to reports from Turkish news sources, the government is saying that Google is responsible for the range of IP addresses that are being blocked due to the court order regarding YouTube, and therefore it is up to the company to correct the problem. Thanks to Robin Wauters for the tip. […]

  • Ceren

    PIMPYOU, yes Turkey is still Europe but not our president and prime minister any more…

    • Tarık Ferman

      President Gül doesn’t approve and says: “This issue must be solved in the legal way.” in his verified twitter page.

  • http://biro.wordpress.com/2010/06/04/plugging-holes-and-plugging-mouths/ Plugging holes and plugging mouths « Birologue

    […] plug this hole. So instead of merely intercepting DNS requests to youtube.com, they implemented an indiscriminate IP address ban on all (known) addresses used by Google to serve up YouTube content. The problem with this is that […]

  • http://gigaom.com/2010/06/04/turkish-government-blocking-access-to-google-sites/ Turkish Government Blocking Access to Google Sites

    […] Update: According to reports from Turkish news sources, the government is saying that Google is responsible for the range of IP addresses that are being blocked due to the court order regarding YouTube, and therefore it is up to the company to correct the problem. Thanks to Robin Wauters for the tip. […]

  • http://biro.wordpress.com Mithat

    I live in Turkey, and it’s clear to me that there is a concerted effort by the ruling powers to move this country away from Europe and toward Arab, Iranian, Indonesian and other states where Islam is a dominant force.

    It’s as heartbreaking as it is enraging. Even more heartbreaking and enraging is the relative apathy/resignation of the people. They have been conditioned by fear to keep quiet. “He with the biggest hammer hits hardest.”

    • http://biro.wordpress.com Mithat

      P.S. I forgot to give credit to Pres. Obama for the “heartbreaking+enraging” meme. I’m not trying to rip him off …

    • m.e

      Well, didn’t this story start with the ban on you tube? And which ruling power are you referring to? Mention of the Muslim countries suggests that it is AKP the ruling party… Hey, wasn’t it he PM who suggested the idea of workarounds to access You Tube? Likewise, the president spoke against the current google ban…

      Please spend some time checking-out the various censorship exercised by the autocrats during the military coups. Mention of Islam is out-of-context in this discussion, typical of single minded pseudo-secularist “white” Turks…

      As if censorship hasn’t been part of Turkey long before the current ruling party… Note that, you tube ban was due to a video that allegedly dissed Ataturk. So, one could trace this all back to cult of personality surrounding Ataturk. For the record, this does not seem to be in accordance with the contemporary European ideals.

      • http://biro.wordpress.com Mithat

        The practice of banning websites was brought to steam by Adnan Oktar/Harun Yahya, who succeeded in getting WordPress banned because some people said things he didn’t like in their personal blogs. After that, the floodgates opened.

        While the PM may be tacitly condoning workarounds for one or two sites, he’s clearly not making web censorship an agenda item. I suspect the reasons for this are (1) On balance the bans actually help political and social conservatives and (2) It’s a dimension of control that he does not want to relinquish in the long term.

        Military coups are by definition not democracies.

  • Hermias

    I have used to TOR network to get around this.
    We run a business in Turkey, and I find this a total insult on my Freedoms.
    Ass a UK citizen, I respect Turkey and it’s laws. however, this is in my view an unlawful decision.
    I also find the response to the Utube issue from the Turkish government ignorant and juvenile.

  • Israel

    It’s sad to see a country going towards third world instead of progressing. I guess Islam can’t live hand by hand with democracy. To me as an Israeli it’s a sad day.

    • Oksanat

      As mentioned above, Islam is irrelevant to this discussion. It’s the white secularist group in Turkey that is the root cause the YouTube ban as part of idolizing and iconizing Mustafa Kemal. Another factor is the clumsiness and obsolescence of IP laws in Turkey.

      So don’t be sad about this one. Israel has way bigger fish to fry right now :)

      • Otto Rom

        I am glad you are happy about Israel’s problems.

        Instead of ignoring your problems by blaming Israel, I would suggest you to try and prevent your country from turning to the 2015 Iran of the world.

        Sane Israeli

  • Otto Rom

    Turkish residents

    As an Israeli citizen I beg you :
    Do something about your Prime-Minister. Ata Turk knew the risks of the nation and put the army in charge of secularism.
    30 years ago Iran was also a secular pro-western nation.

    This path leads nowhere

  • i support freedom in Turkey

    Mr. Erdogan is rapidly driving Turkey into Iran, using the IHH to do just that.

    the rest of the world is concerned that you will become Iran sooner than you think.

    Maybe we need to essable a ship or two with some google working links and sail towards your Istanbul port with our google freedom flotilla. that might help…

  • kemal

    I cant access google books fucking ban.

  • Ajda Erol

    Robin,

    If you want to figure out the mystery…, you should look on these videos. There are some more videos that they might didn’t like…:

    I would like to expresses deep sorrow over the loss of human lives, but it is just amazing that the Turkish government try to hide the truth from their citizens!

    Ajda

  • usurytiger

    Hi Guys,

    I want to tell you something from Israeli people,
    Anyone who I know will tell the same.
    We want Turkey to be free.
    We want no to escalate conflict or to kill anyone.
    We don’t hate anyone, and we don’t hate palestinians.

    The video mentioned before is truth.
    It maybe pathetic but it is truth.

    We want peace.
    Please see the video there ever you could and make your decisions.
    We must stop this hysteria.

  • Andro Id

    “It also seems like the authorities are placing the blame on Google and are telling citizens that it’s up to the company to fix the situation.”

    Sorry for mentioning it but that’s exactly what they do now with the boat issue!
    – It also seems like the authorities are placing the blame on israel and are telling citizens that it’s up to israel to fix the situation. (meaning apologizing to the turkes! for killing their terrorists sent and supported by the Turkish president who is linked to IHH. (read Washington post of today for the exact story of linking Mr. Erdogan and IHH.)

  • Andro Id

    -For the turks who can not access Youtube:
    1. easy to surpass via proxi.
    2. the videos above can be found on other video web sites that are not banned in Turkey.

    3. a question – if WP is blocked as well, how come you can access techcrunch?

    regarding Erdogan going versus Iran, censurship etc. here is one article from the editorial of washing post:

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/06/04/AR2010060404806.html

    and regarding my comment above – Turkish government are now trying to blame israel for curds attack…:
    just unbelievable where do that country is lead to after not being accepted to Europe. guess the european understood that it would be a bad idea for them already two years ago.

    • http://biro.wordpress.com Mithat

      WordPress is not currently blocked in Turkey. However, in August of 2007, Adnan Oktar (about whom you can read in his Wikipedia entry) succeeded in getting it blocked, and it remained so until April of 2008. This was the first high-profile site blocking in Turkey, and the others followed the precedent set here.

  • http://blog.travelfusion.com/2010/06/07/all-google-services-now-banned-in-turkey/ All Google Services Now Banned in Turkey

    […] TechCrunch reports that this was all just a clumsy mistake by Google, and that the Turkish government is holding […]

  • Murat Ozgermi

    It is so sad to read comment of many Turkish commentators bad mouthing the Turkish government. The Turkish government may far from a perfect governance system but the Google issue has nothing to do with the current administration. Google and many other sites have been facing occasional blockage due to a clause in the Turkish constitution. The sites have not been closed by the order of the current administration but by multiple orders of the Turkish courts.

    Now, one may argue that the above mentioned clause of the Turkish constitution may be ridiculous which I agree. The clause states that any bashing towards the founder of Turkish Republic, Mustafa Kemal ATATURK is punishable by law. Therefore when YouTube and many blocked sites were either loaded and/or deliberately furnished by any content against the clause of this specific Turkish constitution will have to face some sort of reaction from the Turkish government because governments can NOT ignore their own constitutions.

    The Minister of Telecom & the prime minister agree that the situation is ridiculous, moreover they pointed workarounds for the Turkish public.

    The next wave of blocks were ordered due to tax and other legal issues between Google and the Turkish government. Google is ignoring the Turkish government even tough it has offices in Turkey.

    Question: What would happen to a Turkish internet company that has offices and operating in The US and ignoring the US government for tax related issues?

    • whatever

      youtube is based on user uploaded content. anyone can be for or against anything or any idea. even if there’s a law against bashing ataturk, an entire website can not be held responsible.

      if the officials were so against badmouthing ataturk, they could have simply inquired information (ISP/IP/country) on the original poster of the incident and could simply have pursued the matter via international law.

      now they’re claiming to be lawful and pointing their law for asking ~$19mil of bribe.

      the blockage was far from being smart to begin with and the officials who had no respect for international law or free speech are now only after the money.

  • http://www.top10bestdatingsites.com/ John Ferry

    What are they china? Come on join the future and stop blocking the web.

  • http://www.bghelp.co.uk/forums/%CE%E1%F9-%F4%EE%F0%F3%EC/40631-%D2%F3%F0%F6%E8%FF-%E1%EB%EE%EA%E8%F0%E0-%E4%EE%F1%F2%FA%EF%E0-%E4%EE-%F3%F1%EB%F3%E3%E8-%ED%E0-google.html#post356438 Anonymous

    […] […]

  • powerscape

    Lawmakers are very silly persons.They supposed to block some web sites.But everybody can enter google,youtube etc.Praticaly, nothing banned in Turkiye.Because there’re tons of way to entering blocking sites and whole country know how to use it. e.g. proxy programs, sites, several ip numbers, ghost ways… However Prime Minister Erdogan watches blocked youtube and suggest peoples to use it and added that people also know how to open blocked sites. Still Turkish users have got high user ratings in these sites.This events occurs because of youtube ip pool complexity with google. And google still do not answer to Turkish government for their tax payments for a long time. So, TAX is the center of it.

  • Korhan

    I do not blame Turkish goverment any more. Google does not wish to pay taxes for ads in Youtube and goverment is against it.

    This is not blocking the web, this is blocking a service that steals money. If google do not want to give taxes to Turkey, why are there billions of ads of Turkish companies?

    Either remove Turkish ads or give their taxes.

  • http://www.middleeasternet.com/?p=1257 Turkey blocking Google services | MiddleEasterNet.com by Tal Pavel Ph.D

    […] been blocked for a long time in the country. The current change is due to the fact that Google has changed the IP address of YouTube site. Probably the Turkish authorities in an attempt to re-block the site […]

  • http://www.gettingpaidtowatch.com/2010/06/06/was-turkeys-blockage-of-google-searches-for-youtube-an-attempt-at-keeping-its-citizens-from-seeing-something-they-didnt-want-them-to/ Was Turkey’s blockage of Google searches for YouTube an attempt at keeping it’s citizen’s from seeing something they didn’t want them to?

    […] Turkey has been banning access to YouTube since 2007, but recent changes in IP addresses had been allowing the video service to trickle in. The nation’s Telecommunication and Communication Ministry (TIB) say’s the recent shutdown included several Google services was for “legal reasons”. Internet users in Turkey started noticing changes Tuesday evening. […]

  • http://www.seslisohbetbk.com Sesli Sohbet

    Google is running a smart business, like the rest of the country, cutting bennies and pay. Wonder how it would be to work for Twitter?

  • http://www.omeglexat.com/ Omegle

    During the one-on-one, I had to chat with an engineer who shouldn’t be allowed to meet the public in any capacity. He openly and deliberately indicated that having to interview me was a complete waste of his time — and did so before he pretty much refused to even shake my hand when we were introduced.

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