Pakistan blocks Wikipedia for 'blasphemous content'
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According to media reports on Saturday, Pakistan blocked the online encyclopedia Wikipedia after it refused to remove offensive or blasphemous material.
days after the Pakistan Telecommunications Authority (PTA) reduced access to Wikipedia pages for 48 hours, threatening to block it completely if content deemed “blasphemous” was and “blasphemous” will not be removed, according to The News.
Press Release: PTA has degraded Wikipedia services in the country on account of not blocking / removing sacrilegious contents. pic.twitter.com/h6ZWuf8TnR
— PTA (@PTAofficialpk) February 1, 2023
“The decision could be revisited after Wikipedia removes the blasphemous content that was identified by the regulator.” ;, — added a spokesperson.
A spokesperson for the PTA stated that Wikipedia has been asked to block/remove said content by issuing a notice.
A hearing was also given; however, the platform did not remove the blasphemous content and ignored the Pakistani authorities' request.
The Wikimedia Foundation said on Saturday that it “does not make decisions about what content to include in Wikipedia or how that content is maintained.”
He added that it “is designed to ensure that articles are the result of many people coming together to determine what information should be presented on the site, resulting in richer content and neutral articles.”
“We hope that the government of Pakistan will join the Wikimedia Foundation in its commitment to knowledge as a human right and quickly restore access to Wikipedia and Wikimedia projects to the people of Pakistan could continue to gain knowledge and share it with the world”, — the message says. .
Blasphemy is a sensitive issue in Muslim-majority Pakistan.
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