Monday, July 31, 2006

Post-mortem report on 'The censorship of blogging in India'

Here is my Post-mortem report on 'The censorship of blogging in India', If you are unable to relate to what I am saying then you should continue reading this post.

What do u understand the term 'Censorship'? According to my favorite knowledge source, Wiki, here is the definition of the term.

'Censorship is the systematic use of group power to broadly control freedom of speech and expression, largely in regard to secretive matters. Sanitization (cleaning or decontamination) and whitewashing (from whitewash) are almost interchangeable terms that refer to particular acts or campaigns of censorship or omission which seek to "clean up" the portrayal of particular issues and facts which are already known, but which may conflict with a presented point of view.'

Currently, I live in India, the largest Democratic (gives me a sense of FALSE PRIDE) Nation in the world. I presume to have/had the freedom to express myself meaningfully on any subject, until Government of India (GoI) on 13th July issued a notice to ban certain sites - Blogger - Blogpsot - Typepad - Geocities. This ban when enforced by the ISPs spread across the country, made an impact on the bloggers especially those on Blogger/Typepad only the following week i.e. 17-19th July. Even though this so called 'Censorship' lasted only for 3 days, this post mortem 'The censorship of blogging in India' shows the lack of knowledge in interpretation & implementation of the GoI's Notice by our Internet Service Providers (ISPs).

  • Why did the GoI issue a notice to ban these sites/domains?
They say that terrorists/certain groups/individuals have been using blogs as a medium for communication, spreading hatred & inciting people for varied interests.

  • But, did the GoI actually issue a blanket ban on these domains or was it the implementation failure of our ISPs in blocking only certain URLs issued by the GoI?

~ GoI - Department of Telecom's notice ~
Via: Neha Viswanathan

After looking @ above scanned version of the Actual Document of the notice, the GoI never really issued a notice for blanket ban, rather the SICK ISPs need to blamed for creating the un-necessary confusion among the bloggers and the GoI.

The Post-mortem report:
  • The ISPs should be blamed for creating the confusion & depriving the freedom of expression & making the GoI look as the 'Culprit'. I feel the ISPs should find a better methodology/process/steps in carrying out Government's notices & regulations.
  •, few bloggers & blogging as a concept, got a wide range of coverage from the National & International media.
  • Bloggers across the world were united in lending voice to this episode & I believe this led to the birth of a Google Group called BloggersCollective. If you wanna know more about them, then here are few useful links BloggersCollective and their website Bloggers Against Censorship.
  • Going further, if the GoI does plan to do something silly like issuing a notice for implementing a blanket ban on the entire blogging domains, I feel this episode should be studied carefully. The Government should address such an issue in a sensible manner by weighing lot of options before making a final call. There are millions of people who use 'Blogging' for various different purposes, U just can't make decisions based on few individual groups/individuals who abuse technology. Even if the GoI does issue such a blanket ban notice, there numerous ways to 'Circumvent' the censorship.

Even though I wanted to write a post on this subject last week, I wasn't able to do so.....Reason?....From last week I am unable to access Blogger & Blogspot from my workplace. The official reason .....Testing new things on how to utilize the available bandwidth in a proper manner.

I am very impressed with Neha Viswanathan, who has given her voice & time on the subject starting from day one. Click here to view her post which covers the entire episode with regular updates.

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Long live INDIA

  • POPULATION: 7 million (less than half of Mumbai)
  • SIZE: Less than that of Kerala
  • ACT OF VIOLENCE AGAINST IT: 2 soldiers kidnapped by Hezbollah, 1 by Hamas
  • RETALIATORY ACTION: War on Lebanon

  • POPULATION: 1 billion+
  • SIZE: 6th largest in the world
  • ACT OF VIOLENCE AGAINST IT: 200+ dead in Mumbai blast, 8 in Kashmir
  • RETALIATORY ACTION: A speech by Prime Minister
Source: Through Email.

Sunday, July 23, 2006

Update of myself!

The first 3 weeks of this month was very hectic, with a challenging task of completing a Use-Case for one of the leading market analysis & research firm. Everything came along fine and use-case was successfully executed on 14th.

I knew the following week would be another stressful one to pass through; that's because my 3rd Semester MBA xams was scheduled from 20-23. I am grateful to my managers, who gave me a week off for the same. Efforts/Preparations for this semester's xams wasn't anywhere close to the previous two semesters; eventually started preparing for it from 16th till 19th. Finally, today had my last paper & it went well; Now when I lookup on all the 4 papers, seems like I have done pretty good, lets wait for the results to be announced in the coming months to know the reality;). One thing I observed this time around was that my concentration levels had dropped very much, they never lasted more than 40 mins. In case any of you have observed yours, could you let me know how good is your concentration?

Due to my xams I happen to miss out on couple of things, first one being the movie marathon @ the blogger couple Jessica-Kishore's residence on Saturday & followed by dinner @ my college mate's place.

Now that I am done with my xams, I hope to spend some good time socializing:)

Friday, July 14, 2006

Food for thought

"If someone with a nostril ring takes it out, then blows their nose, do they have to cover that hole as well as their nostril holes so that snot does'nt blow out everywere?"

Courtesy for this thought is my friend Pawan Reddy.

Thursday, July 06, 2006

Insane world

I am all geared up for watching the France Vs Portugal, the 2nd Semi-final of FIFA world cup 2006, which is gonna kick-off in another 15 minutes . But, I am sure that I will be alive after watching the watch, irrespective of who is gonna win this game; even though I am supporting France. I guess you are trying hard to make sense of what I have written in the previous two sentences, thinking howz football and life correlated???

Then let me point you to this headlines on Yahoo. I am very horrified after reading that piece of news, and many Qs started sprouting in my mind - how can someone be killed for watching football? I really don't know whatz happening to people, what on Earth are these people gonna achieve by killing innocent people for watching sports? Every passing day the world is turning out to be an 'Insane' place to live, all in the name of religion.

Whatz your reaction after reading that, I would like to know your thots on the same.