Free Speech

Internet Censors Clamp Down in Pakistan

Officials target information that might be ... awkward for the powers that be

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Just when we thought censorship in Pakistan couldn't get any worse, it has.  After our joint effort with numerous Pakistani and international organizations succeeded in putting plans for a national filter on hold, and Pakistan relented after a brief experiment with blocking Twitter, we thought we could turn our focus elsewhere for a little while.

We were wrong.

Last Saturday, news emerged that the Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) had ordered all of the country's Internet Service Providers (ISPs) to block fifteen "scandalous" websites, including one hosting an audio recording of a "sensual" conversation between two parliamentarians and another containing video of a press conference in which a female television anchor claimed that she and a government employee are secretly married and have a son.