Emad's Blog (Under Renovation)

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

The Saga Continues

Been following the YouTube situation closely. According to the Federal Minister of IT and Telecom, they made the decision to take it off air on Feb 16 when they found blasphemous content on it. The fear was that in a country where things are already rather volatile, any such proliferation of sensitive material (in context of some Dutch movie) could create a security situation. In some ways, I feel like their heart was at the right place - after all, the case for prohibition is always a complex one.

Unfortunately, let's be honest.. Members of our cabinet aren't quite your average YouTube surfers! So I imagine the discussion went something like this:

Minister 1: 'There's some bad things on this website my son told me about yesterday'
Minister 2: 'Really? What sort of bad stuff? FUN bad stuff??'
(..Loud Laughter..)
Minister 1: 'No man, seriously.. Some bad stuff about the Prophet and all'
Minister 2: 'Dude that's messed up as hell.. What we do?'
Minister 1: 'Well, let's just block it. It's only 1 website. I've heard there are billions on the net. No one will even notice'
Minister 2: 'Sure.. Blocked, it is then! Next on the agenda.. Food Inflation Crisis.. Ohh.. that's a toughie! Wish we could just block that too!'

So block, they did. Unfortunately, the funny thing is that our guys are soo darn good, they ended up blocking it in a manner that the entire world lost access to YouTube for about 2 hours! My My! Google Must be pissed!

Anyway, so the minister, according to the interview last night said that they are the govt of Pakistan and aren't going to contact the owners of some random private website (=Google, Inc.!) to discuss it even if the objectionable material was removed at their request. Their way is to block it! And if the owners of the random private website (=Google, Inc.!!) were concerned, they could talk to us! Haha.

The funny thing is, I don't know what happened since, but YouTube is BACK as of this afternoon, babyyyyy!

So let's hope we've seen the back of that crisis! Thank you all for sharing all those 'anonymous surfing engines'. You can now return to using them for your own illegal purposes! hehe!

And really, what is up with the dirty tricks being pulled on Obama with that picture with the Somali Dress, btw? You have to be pretty low to play people's feelings on races in this manner!

Anyway, in other news, I am rather shattered about AIESEC Pakistan having lost the bid for IPM 2010. It was something extremely dear to many of us and while we expected it, with the political uncertainty making headlines all over the world.. Yet, I know that we're capable of having run a legendary conference and it would have been a great point to meet all those people that were part of creating the AIESEC Pakistan 2010 vision.. and those that are motivated by it to continue to work in this organization every day. I guess it's the knowledge of that capability that counts! But in the end, I am pretty bummed about it, still..

So, all my friends that were planning to visit Pakistan someday with me (read: all my friends), we'll just have to find a new date and venue, people! :)

Keep it good. Cheers.

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