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Tag Archives: Iran

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Iran backs off from tireless efforts to slow down the Internet

Iran has released 3G and 4G frequencies. It is now possible to share pictures taken by one’s phone. The Islamic Republic has eased up on its efforts to strangle the Internet, while not actually killing it. I’ve been talking about this off and on. But, Iran has added a new twist. No kill switch. Just […]

Iranian net sophisticates and a refreshingly candid Minister of Culture

I saw first hand the futility of the Mullahs’ efforts to prevent Internet access by Iranian youth when I was in Tehran at the height of the Arab Spring. But what is new is that it’s the Minister of Culture who is highlighting the hypocrisy and futility. According to “The Iran Primer,” a website and […]

Iran and Russia throw lifeline to Internet

We were serious about the sabotage in SEA-ME-WE4 at Egypt that impaired Internet across Asia, notably in Pakistan, last month. Our ongoing research about the fragility of Eurasian submarine cable connectivity refers to multiple terrestrial initiatives to link Middle East with Europe. EPEG or Europe-Persia Express Gateway is one of them. And Renesys Corporation, which […]

Mobile companies owned by despots and their progeny (and other relatives)

Something we rarely talk about in discussions of the great public policy success of our time, the mobile explosion, is how various kleptocrats rode the mobile boom. Libya’s Qaddafi’s present problems serve to bring this skeleton out of the closet: But never underestimate the human capacity for delusion. Here’s a despot who’s managed at various […]

The liberating potential of social media

In light of what’s going on in North Africa and Western Asia, the liberating potential of social media is very much on the agenda these days. Here is Clayton Shirky on the subject in a debate in Foreign Affairs: It would be impossible to tell the story of Philippine President Joseph Estrada’s 2000 downfall without […]

Bangladesh advances in e gov rankings in S Asia. Sri Lanka drops 10 places & is overtaken by Iran

I was impressed when the ICT Agency made a presentation at a recent conference, that included a detailed response to concerns that Sri Lanka was dropping in international rankings in the ICT space. The presentation included action items that would address weak points and would thus result in improved rankings. e government was central to […]

Iran: Controlling telecom to control people

In the old days, you’d just take over the newspapers and the TV channels. Now you have to take over the phone company too. It is implanting 6,000 Basij militia centers in elementary schools across Iran to promote the ideals of the Islamic Revolution, and it has created a new police unit to sweep the […]

Iran: Revolutionary Guard Telecom

The profitability and surveillance potential of the state telecom monopoly has not been missed by the Iranian Revolutionary Guard, described by many as the pseudogovernment of Iran: The nearly $8 billion acquisition by a company affiliated with the elite force has amplified concerns in Iran over what some call the rise of a pseudogovernment, prompting […]

Censorship: the nuclear option

Some governments shut down telecom networks including the Internet to control dissent. Others do not. What are the conditions that give rise to the former action? Why do others not do this? Israel never shuts down telecom networks but Sri Lanka does. Why? And yet the Twittering goes on. As states such as Iran crack […]

Twitter, Iran and the ability to control information

Twitter postpones scheduled maintenance to keep service available for Iranian users. Journalists request video on twitter and get deluged with responses. The BBC’s Persian-language television channel said that for a time on Tuesday, it was receiving about five videos a minute from amateurs, even though the channel is largely blocked within Iran. One showed pro-government […]

Iran: The use and limitations of ICTs in democratic protests

Since Rheingold wrote of Smart Mobs, activists have been atwitter about the potential of mobile phones and texting to effect democratic change. The ongoing struggle against the theocratic dictatorship in Iran has given many examples. But it also shows the limits. When the government shuts down the SMS system, or indeed the whole network, what […]

Our first home made satellite is for Telecom and Research – Iran

Iran has launched its first domestically made satellite into orbit, state media reports. TV commentary said Monday’s night-time launch from a Safir-2 rocket was “another achievement for Iranian scientists under sanctions”. The satellite was designed for research and telecommunications purposes, the television report said. Iran is subject to UN sanctions as some Western powers think […]

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