YouTube Relations as Political Barometer

I find recent YouTube news is a great way to see how countries look at technology and the internet. On the one hand a Japanese group feels YouTube must rein in copyright violations. The group goes on to say YouTube – now owned by Google – needs to have safeguards in place before videos are uploaded to the massive video database site.
At the opposite end of the spectrum, Iran, has decided to ban YouTube altogether. Yes, you can no longer access the site from Iran. What happens when you go to YouTube? You see the following: “On the basis of the Islamic Republic of Iran laws, access to this Web site is not authorized.”
This move should surprise few as recently the country has restricted access to broadband access. The reason for this move was to make it more difficult to download videos and music.
Although not too surprising, a country’s posture towards the Internet and YouTube provides tremendous insight into how the country feels about its citizens, copyrights and technology in general.

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