Evaluating the Regulation of Access to Online Content in Turkey in the Context of Freedom of Speech

Batu Kinikoglu


This paper aims to critically examine internet access regime in Turkey within the framework of freedom of speech set by international human rights agreements. The enactment of the Law No. 5651 in 2007 led to strict regulation over access to online content. The current situation in Turkey is marked by a general blocking mechanism, a non-transparent filtering mechanism and significant role ascribed to administrative bodies in blocking and filtering decisions. Tracing internet access regime in Turkey historically and discussing the general relationship between internet access regulation and international human rights agreements, the paper addresses the ways in which the internet access regime in Turkey violates the right to freedom of speech. In the light of this assessment, the paper concludes with nine-steps that can be taken to meet the requirements of international human rights agreements. 

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