Wikipedia is taking Turkey to the European Court of Human Rights as it seeks to overturn a blanket ban on its website. Apparently Wikipedia has decided it is wrong when a publication is arbitarily censored because the people in charge don't like its existence.
The Wikimedia Foundation, the charity behind the online encyclopaedia, said it has filed an application with the Strasbourg court in a bid to lift the block, which was established more than two years ago.
Wikipedia said the ban violates fundamental freedoms, including the right to freedom of expression, which is guaranteed under the European Convention.
The move is desperate. For some reason, the Turks don’t appear to be listening to Wikipedia editors and its government bizarrely thinks that it, and not some saddo with a chip on his shoulder with a made up doctorate, would be a better decider of information.
Katherine Maher, Wikimedia executive director claimed: “Wikipedia is a global resource that everyone can be actively part of shaping.”
Well everyone who is on Wikipedia’s select list of editors who think they have the right to decide which publication or individual is notable. Maher went on to say:
“It is through this collective process of writing and rewriting and debate that Wikipedia becomes more useful, more comprehensive, and more representative. It is also through this process that we, a global society, establish a more comprehensive consensus on how we see the world.”
Turkey rolled out a blanket ban on Wikipedia citing national security concerns, in a move that has been widely condemned as a crackdown on free speech.
It came amid a wider tightening of control by President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who ordered the imprisonment of hundreds of political opponents and journalists in the wake of a failed military coup in 2016.
Last year Wikipedia penned an open letter to Turkey’s transport, maritime and communication minister calling for a reversal of the ban, but the website said its calls had been ignored.
Meanwhile China has extended its ban on the website to cover all languages. The country had previously banned the Chinese version on Wikipedia, but it is now blocked in all languages. The site has suffered intermittent blocks in Venezuela amid the ongoing political crisis.