Goodbye WWW – Iran Unplugged

29 May

Sometimes (well,actually usually), my first action in the morning is to open my laptop. Either to check whether my smartphone has developed an independent existence the last night (good/bad surprises included) or to fill the hole in my head and postbox without going down 5 floors for a newspaper. Additionally, I would consider myself being a facebook and blog addict. For hours and hours I may be lost in the endless sea of information, switching from important news, to music, to books and so and so forth. Switching from German, to US and to UK sites is not even worth mentioning, espacially considering that the World Wide Web is enabling us to “be” in many countries at the same time.

Imagine someone would now decide to create an own webspace for each and every country, destroying the World Wide Web and its aim by “separating” instead of “spreading” information. This someone unluckily has a name now. Or many names.

After the elections in 2009 in Iran the so-called ‘Green Movement’ took place, that refers to a series of actions by protesters against Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. Ahmadinejad and Mousavi were nominated for the position of the President of Iran and against all the odds Ahmadinejad won (illegaly?) the elections. The Iranian people protestes against this decision, which ended in violence and grief.
One of the main means of this protest in order to engage the world’s attention was the use of twitter, facebook and youtube.
People were able to contact friends and family and send them pictures and videos of the shocking doings that took place in the Iran.

The death of a young woman, called Neda, became the sad embodiment of the war that took place.

One would argue that this was one of the best examples of the power of the media, where the internet was the only source to the happenings in the Iran.
Currently there are rumours spreading that the government of the Iran wants to not only to create a censored internet use, but to create a whole new webspace for the country. Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei and other top officials are support the internet regulation as a response to the “soft war” that took place via web.
This so-called national internet would, in effect, disconnect the Iranian web from the rest of the world. As the Wall Street Journal states in its article “Iran vows to unplug Internet”, the government “promotes its national Internet as a cost-saving measure for consumers and as a way to uphold Islamic moral codes”.

The national internet would create “a genuinely halal network, aimed at Muslims on an ethical and moral level,” Ali Aghamohammadi, Iran’s head of economic affairs, recently said.
Political brainwash 3.0? Government-controlled newspapers, television and censored internet seems not to be enough to create an isolated state that is in thrall to its president. Is this going to be the prime example for other dictatorships? And what is going to be the reaction of the United Nations, of our world to this dreadful plan?

So many question, far too few answers…

PS: If there are going to be petitions or the like I will provide you with further information.

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