The Day the Turkish Government Banned Itself From Twitter

People in Turkey have banned the ban
  • The only people not on Twitter at the moment are ardent pro-government supporters who do not want to circumvent, and people who may not have the fairly minimal skill required to circumvent. I suspect the latter camp will dwindle.
  • Turks are getting even more practiced and determined in circumvention. As a friend said, her 60-year-old mother, practiced from the days of the YouTube ban, was able to get right back on after being told “do what you did for YouTube a few years ago.” Anyone too young to have figured things out through previous practice is doing so now.
  • Turkey now joins a sad list of countries including Iran and China; Mubarak comparisons are floating around. This is a disaster for the Turkish government, but also a great showing by the people of Turkey of their creative, resilient response.
  • People are backing up their networks to WhatsApp, Viber, Facebook and whatever else I probably don’t even know about. The country is fairly wired, and massive media censorship of the past few years has meant social media is a lifeline that many have adopted.
  • Why does social media bother the government in Turkey so much?
  • Why is it so easy to circumvent this ban?
  • Didn’t the government in Turkey anticipate the backlash?
  • Is Twitter the only politicized social media in Turkey?
  • What’s next?



Talking about technology and society as more than gadgets & features. Conversations on social interactions of technology, not just the latest toy or the hottest start-up. Also not the place to write about how to make a little more money or be more productive in your job.

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Zeynep Tufekci

Thinking about our tools, ourselves. Assistant prof at UNC iSchool. Princeton CITP fellow, Harvard Berkman faculty associate, Sociology.