Friday, December 7th, 2007

Someone poke Syria

News reports* indicate that Syria is now blocking Facebook, alleging Israeli spies were infiltrating Syrian social networks. One can doubt that given some of the other sites on Syria’s blocked list—YouTube, Blogspot, Hotmail, Skype and—wait for it—Amazon.

But not LibraryThing! Syria bans sites, China bans sites. Heck the UAE just banned Twitter!** But we never get banned, by those guys or anyone else; our competitors don’t get banned either. I’m almost sorry about it. YouTube might someday bring down a government, but people talking about books does it all the time.

*See: SeattlePI, Washington Post/Reuters, Mashable, Fox/AP, Jerusalem Post.
**As a certified member of the Web/Lib 2.0 set I’m supposed to think Twitter is a serious thing. I don’t. I don’t fall for the argument that only books matter, or that blogs are giving us the attention spans and intellectual perspicacity of squirrels. And I don’t think social networking is vain shadow of real-life connection. But there is some lower limit to the length of an idea and the depth of a connection—and Twitter is it!

Labels: censorship, syria


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