Turkey aims to negotiate with social media companies until Oct 1

Turkey aims to negotiate with social media companies until Oct 1


Turkey will make all efforts in negotiations with the social media companies in the upcoming six months as the new regulation will take effect on Oct. 1, Mahir Ünal, deputy chair of the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP), said on July 30.

Asked what the consequences would be if Twitter failed to appoint a representative or did not open an office in Turkey, the AKP official said, “You have to make a decision. If those who give an account at the U.S. Congress do not want to establish an interlocutor with us, if they do not accept the legal regulations, one cannot tell the state to drop the issue.”

“I believe that both sides will solve the problem with a win-win approach,” he told private broadcaster NTV.

“A digital world is being established. There is no law yet in the newly established cyberworld. We are trying to create a law in this regard,” Ünal stated.

He refuted opposition parties’ claims that the new law paves way for wide censorship. “We are trying to establish interlocutors,” he said.

There are 38 million Instagram users, 37 million Facebook users, and 14 million Twitter users in Turkey, the AKP official said.

“We have to establish financial correspondence with social network providers. We say that we need to set certain rules in social media. There is no ban and censorship. While making this arrangement, we made it based on Germany’s arrangement. It will come into force on Oct. 1,” he stated.

The Turkish Parliament passed a law that will give authorities more powers to control social media content early July 29.

The law requires foreign social media sites like Twitter and Facebook to appoint Turkish-based representatives to address authorities’ concerns over content and includes deadlines for removal of material they take exception to.