Turkey fines Twitter for failure to remove ‘terrorist propaganda’: Official
ANKARA - Reuters
AFP PhotoTurkey’s communications technologies authority, the Information and Communication Technologies Authority (BTK), has fined micro blogging site Twitter 150,000 lira ($51,000.) for not removing content it says is “terrorist propaganda”, a BTK official told Reuters on Dec. 11.
He did not give further details on the content. This is the first time the Turkish government has fined the popular site. It has temporarily banned Twitter several times after it failed to comply with requests to remove content.
The BTK, which invoked Law No. 5651 (“On Regulating Broadcasting in the Internet and Fighting Against Crimes Committed through Internet Broadcasting”) for the fine, forwarded its decision to the company’s headquarters in San Francisco, California and the office of its lawyer in Turkey. If Twitter pays the fine, it will be paid to the Turkish Finance Ministry.
Turkey makes by far the highest number of official requests for Twitter to censor tweets. In the first half of 2015, 72 percent of total Twitter content removal requests were made by Turkey, far higher than second-placed Russia, which accounted for 7 percent of removal requests.
Access in Turkey to social media sites, including Twitter and YouTube, has been temporarily blocked by court orders on a number of occasions over allegely illegal content.
In March 2014, Turkey blocked access to Twitter, hours after then-Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan vowed to “wipe out” the social media platform. Access was later restored after the Constitutional Court ruled that the ruling to close the site led to a violation of citizens’ rights.