YouTube has had a troublesome history with Turkey in the past decade or so. Since 2007, the website has been banned and unbanned multiple times for various reasons. Recently, Turkey modified its Internet Law No. 5651; which among other things governs the content that will be removed from social media platforms. After analysis and validation, YouTube has agreed that it will comply with the amended law.
The modified law now requires social media platforms to appoint a legal entity who will be responsible for turnaround times on takedown requests from the Turkish government and will also publish transparency reports about the process twice a year as well. As such, YouTube will now appoint a representative in the country acting as a local point of contact for the government. The company has emphasized that this modification to the Internet Law does not impact how the company reviews content removal requests; and that it will ensure that its own policies are followed as well.
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YouTube says, “Over the past few months, we have been thoroughly analysing Turkey’s recently amended Internet Law No. 5651, which provides new requirements for social media platforms such as appointing a local representative, complying with removal & response turnaround times and publishing semi-annual transparency reports. YouTube respects the laws and regulations in the countries where we operate; while maintaining our commitments to freedom of expression, access to information, and transparency. We have been able to find a way forward and will commence the process of appointing a local representative legal entity in compliance with the law, without compromising our values.”
YouTube indicated that its Turkish users and content creators are important to the platform; and it will ensure that it maintains an open platform.
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