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Telecommunications authority bans 138 words from the Internet

(BIANET/IFEX) - The Telecommunication Communication Presidency (TIB) has banned 138 words and terms from the Internet. The list of "banned words" is the latest step in a series of oppressive actions that continue to increasingly restrict Internet freedom in Turkey.

In a notification sent to all service providers and hosting companies in Turkey on 28 April 2011, the TIB forwarded a list of banned words and terms. The list includes a number of "ordinary" words that can be deemed indispensible in usual everyday life.

According to the list, names like "Adrianne", "Haydar" or words like "Hikaye" (Story) fall under the ban. Assoc. Prof. Yaman Akdeniz, lecturer at the Bilgi University School of Law, applied for the right to information to the Internet Department of the TIB as part of the Information Technology and Communication Council.

Akdeniz requested further details of the ban from the TIB. The list comprises a total of 138 "forbidden words" and is classified in three different groups. In particular, Akdeniz inquired why the first names "Adrianne" and "Haydar" from group II on the list were added.

In the scope of Law No. 4982 on the Right to Information, Internet expert Akdeniz also questioned who the names "Adrianne" and "Haydar" actually belong to. Again in accordance with Law No. 4982, Akdeniz demanded the entire range of information and documents related to the preparation of the list.

In the same context, the Internet expert requested information and documents regarding the execution of the new application.

Akdeniz put forward that the above mentioned information and documents were of immediate public interest and available at the TIB as part of the Information Technology and Communication Council. "The explanation of these documents is of public interest," he stated, referring to Article 1 of Law No. 4982 which enshrines "the right to information according to the principles of equality, impartiality and openness that are the necessities of a democratic and transparent government".

Other everyday words included in the list are: Animal, Hayvan (Animal), Baldiz (sister-in-law), Beat, Buyutucu (enlarger), Ciplak (nude), Citir (crispy), Escort, Etek (skirt), Fire, Girl, Atesli (passionate), Frikik (free kick), Free, Gey (gay), Gay, Gizli (confidential), Homemade, Hot, Itiraf (confession), Liseli (high school student), Nefes (breath), Nubile, Partner, Pic, Sarisin (blond), Sicak (hot), Sisman (overweight), Teen, Yasak (forbidden), Yerli (local), Yetiskin (adult), etc.

According to the TIB notification, domain names containing the words on the list will neither be assigned nor used and access to the existing ones will be suspended.

Considering certain supposedly "obscene" words, the list is expected to cause a significant increase of censored Internet sites. Accordingly, words that overlap with two or three-word terms that are considered "obscene" will also be affected by the ban.

As reported by, websites related to home delivery of food, online grocery shopping, IT, football supporters' clubs, or sites of advertising companies will be among those affected by the list of banned words.

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