This month, we’ve summarized relevant occurrences from around the world related to internet policymaking in the IPO’s ‘Internet Policy Roundup’. In our August roundup, read about journalists and politicians in Thailand who have been charged for facebook comments, a new popular app in Saudi Arabia that is providing a controversial space for anonymous feedback, China’s new cyber courts, internet shutdowns in Ethiopia, and a court case against Google in Canada that could have significant effects of freedom of information around the world. These and other story summaries in the roundup here.
Bilge Yesil, Efe Kerem Sozeri
In the early 1990s, the internet in Turkey was in the purview of academic and research institutions and had not yet become a commercial medium available to the masses. Today, 61% of the population (approximately 49 million) is online, and the government is heavily investing in fiber optic infrastructure to attract foreign capital to the country’s growing telecom sector. However, in parallel with the expansion of the digital communications network and the steady growth in overall usage, governmental policies have become increasingly restrictive over the years. In this report, Bilge Yesil and Efe Kerem Sözeri (with assistance from Emad Khazraee in data collection) examine the evolution of internet policy in Turkey from the early 2000s to the present time, analyze the emergence of new forms of internet regulation in a precarious democracy marked by authoritarian impulses, and reveal the fragility of the so-called links between the increase in digital communications and the creation of a pluralistic online sphere. Click here for the full post.