08 May 2010

TH - Thailand censors more websites as protests persist

George Orwell's "1984" had its Big Brother, and Thailand has Ranongrak Suwanchawee. The country's information minister stares down from billboards along Bangkok's expressways, warning that "Bad websites are detrimental to society" and should be reported to a special hot line. The latest crisis in Thailand's past five years of political turmoil has pushed the government into tightening already tough controls over the Internet. The government has declared a state of emergency, barring the media, under threat of a ban or censorship, from disseminating any news that "causes panic, instigates violence or affects stability." Immediately it ordered 36 politically oriented websites blocked.