Thursday, July 20, 2006

The Great Indian Blog Trick

Some thoughts on censorship:

Update: Back in March 2006, I had blogged about Raghav Mahato and his now-defunct FM radio station. What I said in that post about laws being different for the rich and the poor still stands. Raghav Mahato's FM station is dead. Indian blogs are back. It seems the digital elite have a right to communicate their thoughts, but Raghav and his one-dollar-a-month FM station does not. Sucks to be poor and without a voice, doesn't it?

Can we please make SOME FUCKING NOISE? Or are we happy that our favorite kitten-picture-carrying blog is "back on the air?

During India's Golden Age of Censorship, aka The Missing Years, aka The Emergency, newspapers had to deal with rationing of newsprint, while reporters went to jail for taking on the Coiffured One.

Those who forget history are doomed to reading this link several times a year.

Just how do people living at the outer edges of a society fight against government-sponsored censorship? We should be thankful that we belong to a privileged class - one that has the resources to question an entity as large as the Indian government.

Bloggers have it so good. Think about Indian film-makers who have been trying to make sense of the Censor Board since the last 50 years. (CBFC's website even has a helpful button titled "You can help fellow citizens get healthy entertainment". Yay.)

Love thy neighbor. The Indian government blocks websites that supposedly contained anti-Muslim sentiments. So where do the Indian bloggers turn to for bypassing the block? To a server set up for blocked Pakistani bloggers, of course.

It ain't over yet.
***

P.S: Much has been written about this episode. Here's a couple of posts that I think are worth reading. Links to Neha V., Dilip D'Souza and Amit Varma.

6 comments:

GhostOfTomJoad said...

I remember your FM post...but why is the station not working any longer? You mean it has been banned/no longer allowed to operate?

km said...

This guy did not have a licence to operate an FM station. So they shut it down.

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