Reopening of YouTube possible after auction of 3G spectrum -Pakistan Press Foundation (PPF)

Paksitan Press Foundtion

Reopening of YouTube possible after auction of 3G spectrum

Pakistan Press Foundation

ISLAMABAD: The re-opening of social website “YouTube” is not possible before the auction of spectrum for next generation mobile services in Pakistan, which is expected in the first week of March 2014, it is learnt.

Official sources revealed to Business Recorder that the government had expedited efforts to re-open Youtube as soon as possible, however due to the complexity of the issue, there were little chances that the matter would be resolved soon.

Minister of State for Information Technology, Anusha Rahman under the supervision of Chairman Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) Dr Syed Ismail Shah formed a three-member committee comprising member legal and member IT of the ministry to analyse, how Youtube is being operated in other Muslim countries. Further the committee would help in legislation over the issue to control blasphemous contents on internet including Youtube, to be made applicable through an ordinance.

Sources said that it was not 100 percent possible to completely block obnoxious content in the country, however only best efforts could be made to reduce their influx. Now the government had started multi-dimensional strategy for re-opening of the social website including technical and legislative measures, however, it was not expected to be successful in near future.

Senior officials revealed that the management of Google/Youtube has shown willingness to localise Youtube in Pakistan provided the third party indemnity may be given to such web platforms. In this regard, the PTA is in process of finalising such provisions, which then the MoIT will process as enact in the shape of an ordinance, however blocking of immoral material on internet is impossible including Youtube.

Sources said that Youtube was open in several other Muslim countries like Saudi Arabia, Malaysia as these countries had agreements with Google and other search engines and in these countries localise Youtube service was available whereas in case of any issue, Google blocked the link. The three-member committee would study and analyse their model for running Youtube successfully in other Muslim countries.

Minister of State for Information Technology Anusha Rahman on Thursday visited the PTA Headquarters where she was given a detailed briefing by chairman PTA Dr Syed Ismail Shah about web analysis of obnoxious content and the challenges faced in this regard. Later on, the minister visited the PTA Complaint Management System and Call Center. She assured full support of IT Ministry to PTA for its regulatory initiatives.

The minister desired that complaint handling system be made more effective and beefed up keeping the number of complaints in perspective particularly to address the need of proactive search of objectionable content and handling grey traffic-related issues.

Chairman PTA Dr Syed Ismail Shah said that elaborate efforts were being made to provide hassle-free services to consumers for resolving their complaints and welcomes any suggestion to further improve the services.

Business Recorder


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