Turkish authorities are now scouring Facebook and Twitter looking for anyone who 'insulted' public figures online during the recent protests. What is meant by the word 'insulted' is up to the prosecutors. Sites such as wordpress, youtube and BlogSpot were, or are still banned or blocked. http://www.theroadtothehorizon.org/2008/10/news-after-blocking-youtube-and.html Sites that contain some English words are banned, those that include "gay" “beat,” “escort,” “homemade,” “hot,” “nubile,” “free” and “teen" and even the number "31" because it's Turkish slang for masturbation! https://opennet.net/blog/2011/05/turkish-telecommunications-directorate-bans-138-words-turkish-internet The US have been monitoring everybody's social networks looking for so-called trouble makers. Facebook even gone as far as creating shadow accounts for all of their users. These shadow accounts gather information from your internet activity not connected to facebook so for instance they have your email address, their spiders/trawlers scour the net looking for more info on you. This was accidentally revealed last week when they let it slip by exposing over 6 million of these shadow-profiles. http://www.zdnet.com/anger-mounts-after-facebooks-shadow-profiles-leak-in-bug-7000017167/ Ireland has just put a blanket ban on thepiratebay and are currently composing a list of sites to control or ban outright. France have just banned an internet user for 2 weeks setting a precedent, for illegally downloading music after the French supreme court just a year ago said no French citizen can ever be banned from the internet which is considered a basic human right. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Right_to_Internet_access California hit a chalk protester with a possible 13 years in prison plus a thirteen thousand dollar fine for writing, with kid's washable chalk, anti-bank slogans on sidewalks. Slogans such as "Stop Big Banks". No bad language, no insults were scrawled. Jeff Olson cited the first amendment freedom of speech for his actions, normally a misdemeanour. The judge has since banned him and his attorney of even mentioning any of the following terms/words "the First Amendment, free speech, free expression, public forum, expressive conduct or political speech" during the trial - he has also been banned from talking about the trial. http://rt.com/usa/chalk-olson-diego-san-404/ Will little girls playing hopscotch be targeted next for vandalism? Australians sarcastically "celebrate" National Censorship Day on Dec 15th each year with a nationwide show of black armbands, at present over 10,000 sites are banned. "But about half of the sites on the list are not related to child porn and include a slew of online poker sites, YouTube links, regular gay and straight porn sites, Wikipedia entries, euthanasia sites, websites of fringe religions such as satanic sites, fetish sites, Christian sites, the website of a tour operator and even a Queensland dentist." This follows Norway, Denmark and Thailand. who ban sites that are not 100% in favour of their govts or royal families http://wikileaks.org/wiki/Leaked_Australian_blacklist_reveals_banned_sites Belarussians are banned from accessing any sites not Belarussian! http://www.forbes.com/fdc/welcome_mjx.shtml The Danish police came from another angle and opposed internet censorship, instead they tried to give everybody a personal ID for internet access from remote locations such as internet cafes or from any device with a static IP that couldn't be traced back. And sites with "dodgy" content such as terrorism or child porn would almost be promoted in a bid to catch people logging on. http://boingboing.net/2011/06/23/danish-police-propos.html Do you think all of this control is just that? Another way to control us, to make us think twice before we air our feelings/emotions on govts, public figures, politicians. To keep us all down, from preventing the use of the web for anything even considered rebellious? Is free speech, on the web at least, a thing of the past?