YouTube Banned by Maroc
1:30 PM -- Rumors surfacing this weekend have been confirmed: Moroccan ISP Maroc Telecom has added YouTube to its short list of banned Websites. The blogosphere is all abuzz with discontent, while Maroc -- controlled by Vivendi -- is suspiciously blaming a technical problem.
The knee-jerk reaction is to assume the Moroccan government is stifling some combination of Islamic extremism, criticism of the monarchy, and/or support for the separatist movement in Western Sahara. However, customers of Wana and Méditel (the smaller, private telecoms in the country) still have YouTube access, so it doesn't look as if the move came from Rabat. Still, it is worth noting that the Moroccan government owns 34 percent of Maroc.
As Americans and Europeans fight for their inalienable right to crack DVD copy-protection, it's always good to have a little perspective.
— A.L. Friedman, Editor at Large, Light Reading
Special thanks to Sarah Kramer