Erdogan Blocks Wikipedia, Bans TV Dating Shows, Purges Another 4,000 Public Officials

Tyler Durden's picture

Two weeks after winning the Turkish constitutional referendum by a modest but decisive margin, president - or perhaps it is now despot - Erdogan decided to take his newly decreed powers for a spin and overnight in rapid succession surprised foreign observers when Turkey decreed that it would ban TV dating shows, fire an additional 4,000 public officials and also ban Wikipedia.

The country's Official Gazette published the decrees on Saturday evening. The first named thousands of civil servants to be dismissed, including nearly 500 academics and more than 1,000 Turkish military personnel. The decree also reinstated 236 people to their jobs. The second decree, among other things, bans radio and television programs for "finding friends and spouses" according to AP.

The latest purge follows more than 47,000 people have been arrested and 100,000 have been terminated for alleged connections to terror organizations, and takes place with Turkey under a state of emergency resulting from last summer's failed "coup" attempt which Erdogan blamed on the "shadow state" directed by the cleric Fethullah Gulen, who currently resides in rural Pennsylvania.

Erdogan's decree also banned several popular TV dating shows, a move that reportedly had been in the worls for months. 

"In radio and television broadcasting services, such programmes in which people are introduced to find a friend.... cannot be permitted," said the text of the decree.

Deputy Prime Minister Numan Kurtulmus said in March that the ban was in the pipeline, arguing the shows do not fit in with Turkish traditions and customs.


"There are some strange programmes that would scrap the institution of family, take away its nobility and sanctity," Kurtulmus said at the time.

Some see in this decree the first traces of Turkey sliding back away from the secular state, established less than a century ago by the creator of modern Turkey, Mustafa Kemal Ataturk, and toward conservative Islam under Erdogan. However, AKP supporters have responded that dating shows receive thousands of complaints every year and the ban is in the public interest.

Separately, Turkey also said it had blocked all access to Wikipedia; the country's Information and Communication Technologies Authority implemented the ban against the online encyclopedia because Wikipedia "had failed to remove content promoting terror and accusing Turkey of cooperation with various terror groups" according to AFP. "There was no indication when the ban might be removed, with a formal court order expected to follow in the coming days."

In response to the news, Wikipedia's founder Jimmy Wales tweeted that "access to information is a fundamental human right. Turkish people, I will always stand with you to fight for this right."

In an ironic twist, AFP notes that the incident quickly spawned its own separate Wikipedia entry, "Wikipedia blocked in Turkey." This is what it says:

On the morning of 29 April 2017, following news from Turkey Blocks that all language versions of Wikipedia had been blocked in Turkey, several reports were published of the event. The BBC reported that the Turkish authorities had blocked all access to Wikipedia in the country from 8.00 GMT. No reason was given by Turkey's Information and Communication Technologies Authority which simply stated: ""After technical analysis and legal consideration based on the Law Nr. 5651 [governing the internet], an administrative measure has been taken for this website." Voice of America reported that Turkish media had explained the blockage was a result of "terror-related content". NDTV said that the move had caused strong reactions on the social media against the decision to deny access to "one of the world's most popular websites".


Law No. 5651, known as the Internet Act (IA), was enacted on 4 May 2007. The purpose of this law has been described by the PTC as follows: "There are 2 reasons for the law to be brought out. The first reason; determining the liability and the responsibility of collective use providers, access providers, location providers and content providers which are the main actors of the Internet. The other reason is to determine the procedures and fundamentals related to the specific crimes committed over the Internet and fighting these through content, location and access providers." More recently, the law has been used to censor individuals, journalists and the media. The European Council's Venice Commission has found the law to be particularly controversial.


Now Wikipedia is readable but not editable with FreeWiki by in Turkey

Over the past several years, Turkey has repeatedly blocked - so far on a temporary basis - popular websites such as Facebook and Twitter, usually shortly after major events such as mass protests or terror attacks take place.

With Erdogan now having what is effectively absolute power, it is likely that many more shutdowns, this time permament, of popular social networks and media outlets are in Turkey's immediate future, especially as Erdogan is likely poised to coalesce even more power. As the following AFP chart shows, the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) has been virtually unopposed in 12 successive elections, as well as referendums, since president Erdogan he came to power in 2002.

Which is to be expected with Europe constantly turning a blind eye to Erdogan's transgressions due to his strategic location at the nexus between Asia and Europe. In the past two years, Erdogan's leverage has only grown as there are now over 2 million Syrian refugees held inside Turkey's borders, which could be deployed in direction Europe, any time Brussels, or Berlin, engages in any activity that Erdogan disproves of. Which also explains how Erdogan managed to accumulate virtually supreme power while all of Turkey's "democratic" peers and neighbors looked the other way.

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directaction's picture

Draining the swamp.

Benito_Camela's picture

Meanwhile in Trump's America (a continuation of Obama and Bush's Americas) we are imprisoning journalists without habeas corpus because they didn't ask for permission to give interviews after they were released from prison where they served several years on bullshit political charges.

Leiderman called the impromptu media restrictions “disgusting” and said he believed the arrest was an act of reprisal for criticizing the government. “I would call the people who did this a bunch of chicken-shit assholes that are brutalizing the Constitution,” Leiderman said.

We all know that both the left and right love to talk about sanctions when Putin does this kind of thing. 

Non-Corporate Entity's picture

Well it looks like Turdagain has succumbed to the seductive offerings of the ring. Orcs to be unleashed soon. Snowflakes are the first wave.

Gerrilea's picture

We ahould treat them like we do North Korea, a terrorist organization and cut all internet lines to the nation.  Then kick them out of NATO. Then surround them with our troops and nuclear weapons.  Blockade the shit out of them. NO resources in or out of the country, starve them like we did Iran.

Sadly, while I do not subscribe to the psychos called the "bible", he's fulfilling its predictions pretty well.  UGHhhhhhhh.

Beans's picture

Iran is not starving, Gerry. 

directaction's picture

Dude, you're friggin' stoned crazy.

chickadee's picture

Some folks got purged

1.21 jigawatts's picture

Erdo makes Nutyahu look moderate.  Bravo.

. . . _ _ _ . . .'s picture


If Turkey sides with China/Russia, your economy goes up in flames.

GodSpeed_00's picture

Turkey going full moslem retard.

OliverAnd's picture

Erdogan is competing with Kim Jong-un.

Publicus_Reanimated's picture

You all need to consider two things:

1.  This all comes right after the anniversary of the Armenian Christian massacre by "Turkish" Moslems.  A spike in internet searches was recorded, and old Erdy got all in a snit so banned Wikipedia.

2.  This is just practice.  There is no on/off switch somewhere in Ankara labeled "Wikipedia".  The addresses must be physically added to a list.  And who do you think writes the software that makes all that possible?  Hint -- don't be evil.  By the time it's implemented in the USA they will be pretty good at it from practice.

Bunga Bunga's picture

Don't worry, when Erdogan starts bombing Assad, he will become the Western democrats best friend again.

OliverAnd's picture

With American, Russian and Kurdish forces in the middle I think not.

Golden Showers's picture

Turkey just happens to sit on a site called Gobekli Tepe. It would not do at all for humanity to have this most ancient of archaeological sites remain in the human consciousness.

There are hundreds of pyramids in China.

So far Babylon has been destroyed pretty well. Afghanistan, Lybia, Syria. Egypt is under control. Israel is the editor of historical facts because they are better than everyone.

No one can tell us about St. Petersburg.

The reason why Turkey doesn't want dating shows is because Erdogan doesn't want it's women to get any ideas while they sit at home doing jack shit. What this means is that the 21st century is too much for half the population to select their own sperm donors via natural selection.

Banning wikipedia means Turkey can't edit it's own encyclopedia. There is something going on. Since Erdogan effectively made himself some kind of hot shit dictator a week ago, this is what we get.

DelusionsCrowded's picture

He's doing in Turkey what many people wanted on in the West about 30 years ago . Tighening of public morals (ie Banning MTV and Tightening Public Advertising code ) and protection of marrage structure and strict controls of None European immigration . The populic sensibly wanted to protect the State that looks after them .The secret society and its millions of members wants to destroy the Old WO and errect a NWO World Gov dictatorship human zoo .

DelusionsCrowded's picture

If Merkels behaviour and the way the Western Shadow Gov condons it doesn't tell us something then nothing will .

Justin Case's picture

"Tighening of public morals"

This action started in Germany in the 30's. People were fed up with where the country was headed, with porn in movie theaters, open homosexuality and in live theater, art etc. They voted for change, b/c they were fed up and disgusted with those promoting it.

youarelost's picture

And only 1 person talked of Turkey becoming the head of the new caliphate .....

Justin Case's picture

Erdogan is cleaning the swamp, Turkish style. Unlike merica, he's in charge and does as a leader of a country should be able to do, not opposed by a judge in a court room.

south40_dreams's picture

Genital mutilation and abortions NOW, Allah wills it!

Justin Case's picture

Circumcision is also a jooish religion where a child who has no decision in the mutilation of his body should be banned.

Since 2000 13 known cases of herpes have been contracted from the religious practice
Two deaths and two babies suffering brain damage have resulted
Department of health warns there being no safe way to perform the ritual that dates back more than 5,000 years

The ultra-Orthodox Jewish practice of metzitzah b'peh requires a practitioner to orally suck the baby's penis to 'cleanse' the open wound following its circumcision, making them susceptible to the virus.

Laughing Sawfish's picture

Even with all the people Erdogan is locking up, I'll bet the incarceration rate is still nuch higher in the U.S.  Just sayin'