Iran tries to censor blogs...
Ultimately, they will fail...but until they do, lots of people are going to be harassed...
On his last visit to Iran, Canadian-based blogger Hossein Derakhshan was detained and interrogated, then forced to sign a letter of apology for his blog writings before being allowed to leave the country.And, how are they censoring blogs?
Compared to others, Derakhshan is lucky.
Dozens of Iranian bloggers have faced harassment by the government, been arrested for voicing opposing views, and fled the country in fear of prosecution over the past two years.
It also is one of a growing number of Mideast countries that rely on U.S. commercial software to do the filtering, according to a 2004 study by a group called the OpenNet Initiative. The software that Iran uses blocks both internationally hosted sites in English and local sites in Farsi, the study found.
The filtering process is backed by laws that force individuals who subscribe to Internet service providers to sign a promise not to access non-Islamic sites. The same laws also force the providers to install filtering mechanisms.
The filtering "is systematically getting worse," said Derakhshan, who was detained and questioned during a visit to Iran last spring, just before the election of hard-line President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.