Saturday, December 3, 2022

Iranian dailies: Blocking internet to silence protests ineffective, irrational

Two Iranian dailies have questioned the government’s move to put a chokehold on the internet following the protests and deadly riots over the death of a young Iranian woman in police custody over a month ago.

Resalat daily, known as a principalist and pro-government news outlet, wrote in an editorial on Tuesday that the restrictions on the internet to restore calm to the country have been ineffective and costly.

The daily also wrote that people chose foreign social media platforms because the domestic apps were introduced belatedly.

It also stated that, “We need to know that firstly, communication and communication technologies cannot be filtered. Secondly, if the goal is to manage Generation Z “their VPNs are always on,” adding, not all disturbances are caused by social networks.

Meanwhile, reformist newspaper Sharqgh echoed similar reservations on Tuesday, writing protesters cannot be taken off the streets by reducing the internet speed.

It said the move has dealt a lethal blow to many online businesses and social interactions.

The daily noted that many protest movements, like the 1979 Islamic Revolution in Iran, happened at a time when the internet did not exist.

Following the recent unrest and deadly riots, the Iranian government restricted access to internet, blocking apps like Instagram and WhatsApp. Officials say, the rioters use these apps as venues for more coordination.

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