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State of IT Governance in Pakistan – A Report by Bolo Bhi

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Over the last two-and-a-half, years we at Bolo Bhi have engaged with government and non-government stakeholders on the issue of censorship in Pakistan, to find a way to minimize and end it. While much effort is spent on blocking and censoring content on the Internet in Pakistan, and conversation around it, we wanted to begin […]

Youtube

Submission to Court in YouTube Case: May 13, 2014

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Date: May 13, 2014 Writ Petition 958­2013: BytesforAll vs Federation Lahore High Court Submitted to: Justice Syed Mansoor Ali Shah & Justice Atir Mahmood Honourable Sirs, Below is a summary of the discourse that has taken place in court over the last year, on lifting the ban on YouTube, and input that has been gathered […]

Youtube

MoIT Says Will Only Comply With Court – But Has It?

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Last week, members of the Bolo Bhi team observed a session at the National Assembly, anticipating a resolution to unban YouTube to be tabled. Member of National Assembly MNA Shazia Marri (PPP) had tabled a resolution seeking to lift the ban on YouTube on April 1, however, it never made it to the agenda. She […]

privacy

Netsweeper in Use in Pakistan

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There is a strong reason to believe now that the traffic for our gateways is being managed by Netsweeper. The research revolves around one of the key gateways that handles network traffic for Karachi, namely the following server: khi77.pie.net.pk (202.125.134.154) From within Pakistan, any attempt to access this server results in an access block. However, when […]

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To Block or Not to Block: YouTube

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This article was originally published in Newsline’s September 2013 issue “We’ve taught YouTube a lesson by banning it and forcing Google to lose out on revenue in Pakistan because it did not remove the video.” This was the populist response to the ban, which is now almost a year long, on the video-sharing platform. But […]

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Filters, Morality and the Element of Choice

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The Ministry of Information, Technology & Telecom (MoIT) in Pakistan was actively considering filtering softwares as a solution to unban YouTube. According to reports, these filters are already in place. This, to them, is the ultimate solution to all evil that exists on the Internet. Why is that a big deal? Well, for one, it […]

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Blocking of YouTube: What’s Legal, What’s Not

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Published in the January 2014 edition of the All Pakistan Law Decisions Journal Section, “Why the YouTube Ban is Illegal and Undesirable” by lawyer Babar Sattar, discusses the legality of the YouTube ban and actions of authorities involved, including their mandate and role. It discusses how their actions correspond with fundamental rights – or don’t […]

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Bolo Bhi Amicus Reports on YouTube Case Hearings

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How do we address the problem of access denial in Pakistan? The dilemma authorities and now the court is faced with is this: on the one hand are sentiments that need to be respected; on the other are freedoms that also need to be protected. And this debate is currently ongoing at the Lahore High […]

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Twitter Banned in Pakistan

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Once again, Internet users in Pakistan have been slapped with a ban. Early in the day on May 20, 2012, Twitter users in Pakistan started encountering problems logging into their Twitter accounts. At first, Twitter was mostly inaccessible through browsers but accessible through applications on phones. It varied from one ISP to another as well as mobile […]

URL Filtering System Ad (Feb 22)

Filtering Content on the Internet

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Block, ban, censor. These seem to be the only options ever considered by the Pakistan government when it comes to the Internet. Ever since the 2010 ban on Facebook was imposed and subsequently lifted, there were whispers about the government investing in filtration software. In 2010, a blanket ban was the only option since blocking […]