Sunday, 11 October 2009

Corbis Blocked

Image representing Corbis Corporation as depic...Image via CrunchBase

Etisalat has blocked Corbis, the photo library owned by one William Gates III Jnr.

A major site used by millions of creatives around the world, the Corbis picture library is an important resource. Blocking it sets a worrying precedent - does this now mean that other picture libraries are going to be subject to blocking? And what does that mean for the UAE's creative industries?

Creativity comes with freedom of expression, they're old (ahem) bedfellows. Where there is creativity you find people pushing the envelope.

I think you need to take a position - make an evaluation of the cultural value of a site vs a couple of things you don't like. Not just smash in a block the second your software catches sight of a naughty bit.

This random blocking is helping nobody - I've posted about it before. Flikr is bad enough, social networks are bad enough.

But a major internationally renowned image library?

They've got to be kidding...

BTW, Du has not blocked Corbis. So we may yet see this potty decision reversed.

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Oussama said...

Does anyone know the criteria used by Etisalat to block a site, or is it some junior clerk's idea of what constitutes unacceptable values. The idea of having an unknown person being the guardian of my moral values is not only detestable but it is so condescending in the fact that we are all considered incapable of distinguishing between right and wrong regardless of background.

Mita said...

Just when you think that they couldn't get more foolish, they are.

Perhaps TRA need to post links to sites like this on their web site so that the relevant sector can vote. Why don't they have a panel of experts from different industries to help decide what should be blocked? This is a country encouraging business but limiting their access to resources.

Do these Telecoms not realise that those that want to access "unproductive sites" have the resources to do so already?

I have to stop. My blood pressure is rising and that is no good to man or beast.

Anonymous said...

Big E and du always defend themselves and let us know that they only block anything after being instructed by the TRA to do so. Big E and du have no authority to block anything. At least that's what they CLAIM. Seeing the discrepancy in blocked websites I have my doubts....

Maybe we see a new stock image company coming out of the ashes of Big E soon? And suddenly it makes sense.

Jayne said...

I'm so glad I don't have to put up with Itisatwats crap any more! All it takes is $30 & you get a VPN, where you can access whatever you want. Itisatwat knows this, but they're happy to sit back in their smug ivory tower. Bloody hypocrites.

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