Yesterday, there was an unfortunate incident where there was an explosion in Turkey’s capital, Ankara. It led to over 30 people being killed and over 100 injured according to reports and it was not the first of its kind.
Now there is a new development in the story where according to the Hurriyet Daily News, a court banned social media access in the country after the attack on the capital. Social media in this case includes Facebook and Twitter and it was shown by complaints by residents who posted comments about the issue.
— Sophia Jones (@Sophia_MJones) March 13, 2016
so now access to social media is more important than national security? #Ankara
— Malik (@GenialMalik) March 13, 2016
Having to use a VPN again to access twitter and other social media. Sad, very sad. Information doesn't kill, never has. #Turkey
— Suraj Sharma (@SSmanutd) March 13, 2016
Blocking access to social media after a tragedy like the one in #Ankara today is unconscionable.
— Confection Imagineer (@OaklandElle) March 13, 2016
Apparently according to RT, access to social media sites (Twitter, Facebook and others) were blocked because images of victims of the attack were circulating in these platforms. Just like any other social media ban, this has led people to download and use virtual private networks (VPNs) to access these sites. That is not all according to the publication. Traditional broadcast media were also banned from covering parts of the deadly explosion.
This is one of those cases where social media use comes into conflict with government policies. Social media would be a great platform to make sure people communicate and reach one another in this times of tragedy but sometimes people are not courteous where gory images are usually shared
As we saw in the case of Uganda, banning social media was pointless really since we still got plenty of information from people on the ground about the election. Governments all over the world will have to come up with newer ways to control gory stuff about an incident from circulating in social networks without necessarily banning their use.