Most popular media sharing internet sites like Youtube, Esnips, Midiafire, Filefreak, upload-mp3 are blocked by the Bangladesh government from Sunday evening. Government is considering blocking more sites such as Facebook etc.
The blocking of sites took place following posting of an audio clips containing closed-door meeting between Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina and members of the Armed Forces following the brutal murder of Army Officers and massacre inside the headquarters of Bangladesh Riffles.
Commenting on the blockade of Yutube and other sites in Bangladesh, international IT experts say, Bangladesh government must be considering Internet as mobile phones [Cell Phone] services. There are many ways people can bypass the blockage. In this particular case anyone can use Anonymous proxy and bypass firewall to enter the desired file.
Youtube, eSnips etc are extremely popular sites in the world. Bangladesh government could have made requests with the concerned sites if they considered any particular audio or video harmful for the society, and subsequently such contents could be removed.
Some locals are opining that the contents of the closed-door meeting were already published in a Bangladeshi newspaper. Moreover, any blockade will rather attract attention of more people internationally to that particular content on Youtube etc.
Since the blocking decision came in media, the news has already been carried by most of the major newspapers and news sites around the world. It is rather drawing attention of millions of people around the world to the contents of the tape, which cause blocking of YouTube and other sites in Bangladesh.
A top official of Bangladesh Telecommunication Regulatory Commission [BTRC] has defended blocking of Websites to Bangladeshi visitors in the ‘national interest’, saying it is permitted by law.
“Nothing has been done which is beyond the jurisdiction of the government,” BTRC official said.
“The government can take any decision to stop any activity that threatens national unity and integrity,” he said.
YouTube is owned by Google, one of the largest and popular search engines around the world.
Meanwhile, according to a posting on YouTube web site, the tape was uploaded by Maihul Islam Nasim, a reporter for the Bangla TV community channel in London.
Bangla TV started its operation through an event on July 1999 at Wembley Hall, but its transmission began on 16th September 1999. For past 10 years it is mostly viewed by Bengali Community living in United Kingdom and European Union cities. Mohammed Firoze Khan is the chairman of Bangla TV.
It may be mentioned here that, news site and internet sites blocking continues in a number of authoritarian countries in the world. In Bangladesh, this is for the first time, number of popular media sharing sites have been blocked.