Twitter Cannot Be Banned Rules Turkish Court

TwitterA Turkish court has ruled that Twitter cannot be banned by the government. The ban, which took place just last week, led to many companies and individuals angry over the move to push against freedom of expression. People around the world have started to fight for the rights of the Turkish people.

The journalists’ union and bar association in the country went to court to argue that blocking the social media site meant that the freedoms of communication and information were contravened.

The question now is when Twitter will be made available to all users again. The government has 30 days to appeal the decision to overturn the ban, and can refuse to allow access within that time. Turkish users have managed to find a way around the ban though, and are still posting on their own accounts from within their country.

The ban was reportedly in place because of a corruption scandal within the government, and the social networking site was used to spread the details. The government attempted to minimize the damage due to an upcoming election, but the ban has really made the situation worse. The election will take place on Sunday, and the site could still be blocked until then due to the 30 day period to appeal the new ruling.

Twitter cannot be banned, according to a recent ruling by the Turkish courts, and a number of companies, individuals and governments around the world support that ruling. People in the country started protesting over the ban, which took place on March 20, and the United Nations Human Rights office and United States both condemned the decision.

The social media site has even gotten involved in the decision. Twitter decided to take legal action against the Turkish government, stating that there are “no legal grounds” for the banning of the social networking website. The government argued that the social media site violated the privacy of the people. However, the social media site argues that all tweets that did violate rules have been removed, and some have been banned from being viewed within the state.

A complaint with the European Court of Human Rights has also been filed by two cyber law experts. They believe that the right to information is being violated by the ban and want the government to be forced to overturn it.

Twitter has not been the only website to be on the wrong side of the government. President Tayyip Erdogan argued that YouTube is being used to leak video and telephone messages. The Turkish government has complained about YouTube in the past, though.

Deciding to ban the social media site led to questions about whether any others would follow suit. There were worries that the likes of Facebook, Google+ and Instagram would find the use limited in the country. However, it seems like the focus is just on the 140-character website for now.

Unless an appeal is successful, users will gain straight-forward access to the site within the next 30 days. A Turkish court has ruled that Twitter cannot be banned by the government, and there are other separate rulings expected in the near future.

By Alexandria Ingham

Sources:

New York Times

The Verge

Reuters

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