Thailand Blocks YouTube

Filed as Multimedia, News on April 4, 2007 4:32 pm

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Reuters reports that the Thai government has issued orders to block YouTube from within the country after YouTube declined to take off allegedly offensive videos.

The ban was brought about by a 44-second video clip that ridiculed Thailand’s King Bhumibol Adulyadej, which is a crime in Thailand by virtue of lèse majesté (in which criticizing or offending the monarchy, any royal, or even the King’s image itself, are criminal offenses punishable by up to 15 years in prison). One of the notable parts that were offensive, especially to Thai Buddhists, was “the juxtaposition of a pair of woman’s feet, the lowest part of the body, above his head, the highest part of the body.”

According to Communications Minister Sitthichai Pookaiyaudom, YouTube’s response was that it did not find anything offensive about the video, so they turned down the request to remove it. He added that as soon as YouTube puts the video online, the Thai Government would reinstate access to youtube.com.

The Thai Government has been active in banning websites they deem to be offensive to the monarch, the army, or that are in favor of Thaksin Shinawatra, who was ousted in a bloodless coup d’état in 2006.

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  1. Youtube » Youtube April 4, 2007 7:31 pmApril 4, 2007 at 6:36 pm
  2. By Darnell Clayton posted on April 4, 2007 at 8:36 pm
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    Doesn’t Thai mean “free,” and Thailand mean “free land?”

    This is rather silly IMHO. Yes, there are images, video’s, etc. that I find offensive.

    Do I want them band? Sure! But then I would have to give up freedom of speech as well, so allowing the offensive images to display is worth keeping freedom alive.

    Note: I also noticed TBH didn’t link to the video? Is it because we don’t want to get banned in Thailand as well?

    Double Note: The video is really dumb (quality wise) so it seems even worse for a government to get upset about a video with worse graphics than when Mario first came out on Nintendo.

  3. By J. Angelo Racoma posted on April 5, 2007 at 1:26 am
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    Darnell, call it editorial oversight on my part. And now I think the video has been put offline. I do believe here’s the link: http://youtube.com/watch?v=4SRyffEbJ50 . It says the user has taken the video offline (or perhaps YouTube did it?).

    Cheers.

    Angelo

  4. By Kelly Goode posted on April 5, 2007 at 8:47 am
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    Thailand blocking YouTube-
    Well – blocking You Tube isn’t the answer. Understanding the future of the Digital Media Marketplace is.

    The way it should work is this: the content creator (the band), the industry leader (the record label) and even you (the p2p user) should be able to buy, trade, and sell the songs – but make money on it – continually. Doesn’t that make sense?

    Yes – everyone is getting into the game. Sharing content p2p is embracing – no – encompassing technology today. What “everyone” needs to grasp onto is that shared content can lead to profit for p2p users, industry leaders and content creators.

    The 9thxchange is a company revolutionizing change in this area. Their CEO, John Bonaccorso, understands the needs of p2p, content creators and content providers – He also understands that this is just the begining of change.

    The 9thXchange marketplace is the newest way to bring together buyers and sellers of digital content. The service dramatically reduces content piracy by offering the seller lifetime royalties—even on exchanges between consumers. Moreover, the service accommodates all technology platforms, file types and creators. The 9thxchange and its CEO John Bonaccorso have been fully featured in Crains Detroit AGAIN.

  5. By Educating the UNeducated: posted on April 11, 2007 at 2:32 pm
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    First, I am a Thai-American born and raised in the United States. I am just equally a foreigner. But as much as I am detached from the true aspects of the Thai culture, I am still open-minded to listen and accept views from both sides. And with this scenario, I am proud to say that I agree with what the Thai government decided on this matter.

    Many people may not understand why Thais love their King so much or why Thais are so upset about this whole case. It’s understandable because of the differences in culture. And it’s ok. But learning about the issue before taking any action would be the better thing to do. Putting yourselves in that position to better grasp the idea would really help you understand from their perspective. There is not right or wrong in politics. Politics will always be politics. People will agree, people will disagree. There’s no definent.

    But in the Thai culture and religion, we follow the characteristics and form of “respect.” Respect Buddha, your mother, your father, your teacher, etc… We respect those who help shape us positively into the individuals we are today, and we place them in a higher level than us. The higher the level, the more pure; the lower the level, the more bad. Think of it like the levels of heaven and hell; heaven is up (good), hell is down (bad).

    Thais love and respect their King and Queen because they are the father and mother of the land. They will literally do anything to the best of their ability for their citizens. They will go out there and engage in the activity first-hand, even if it means to break sweat. They build dams, schools, hospitals… you name it. They are environmentalists and humanitarians – they do what they can for the good of the country. And after all of this, if you don’t love or respect him, then what is it that you have for him? Do you hate him after all the good he’s done for you? Of course not.

    Something many can relate: the Founding Fathers of the United States of America and what they did for their country. There’s no doubt why most Americans admire and respect them: they built the base for this country. The admiration and respect that Americans have towards their Founding Fathers is no different to the love and respect that us Thais have towards our King and Queen.

    This whole thing is basically more of a cultural thing. If that Swiss man is living or staying in Thailand, he has to abide by Thai laws. Same goes for everyone else. Thais who live in America still have to follow the rules here. It works both ways. He deserved what he got. He should’ve known better, especially if he’s going to live in a foreign country.

  6. Think Global, Sue Local » Jack Of All BlogsMay 28, 2007 at 6:48 am