Pakistanis locked out of millions of websites as Login with Facebook is not working due to social media blockage

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In Pakistan after PMLN led government failed to disperse the protestors at Faizabad, basically to prevent the people from knowing the current situation, government took steps which affected lives of millions of Pakistanis. One such step was blocking the social media. Blockade of social media in itself is act which tried to prey on the people’s right of information. But there even more damaging consequences of it, which people of Pakistan had to bear.

Facebook login not working due to social media blockage
“Login with Facebook” not working due to social media blockage

One such example is “Login with Facebook”. Almost every internet user knows it very well what “Login with Facebook” is. Also, almost every website which requires users to login to their system provide the feature to people to login to the via Facebook. So People instead of making the account on every website, use the Facebook to login to all those site.

Now what happened is, when the Facebook was blocked after the Faizabad operation failure, millions of people were locked out of their accounts on many websites on which they used to “login via Facebook”. And these websites may be very important ones, like the freelancing sites, which people use to earn their living online. Or the eCommerce sites on which they had ordered something and payed for it and now not able to login to website to track their order. These are just two basic use cases these websites can range from education to travel and much much more.

So these childish steps of blocking the social media have left people locked out of many useful sites which may effect their life very badly. Someone earn bread for their children via a freelancing site which he logs in via Facebook and now after being locked out if it, isn’t it situation of worry for him.

Now what people can do is wait, hope and pray that government normalizes the things very soon. Also, I hope that next time before blocking the social media websites and services, authorities consider what impact it will have on lives of people.

In my own opinion blocking such services in today’s world are like oppressing your own people and their rights of information and free speech. No democracy allows its democratic leaders to give and implement such blunt decision which affect people so badly. These blockages are seen in countries like Syria and other countries when some dictators were ruling the people and didn’t wanted the world to know their crimes against humanity.

In my opinion it was nothing of this scale for which government needed to block TV channels and specially social media. Whatever happened is just not allowed in a democracy and government should think million times before taking such actions.

UPDATE: Following the fierce public reaction, the social media, blocked TV channels and all affected platforms were restored in just hours. This shows one thing, unlike china and few other countries, Pakistani people does not take the internet censorship lightly and they will not allow any government to take away their freedoms. However, censorship to block any inappropriate content is more than welcome.

How to Watch Pakistani News Channels Online as they are Vanished from TV Cable networks after start of Faizabad Operation

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After start of Faizabad operation today, all the news channels were instructed via PEMRA (Pakistan Electronic Media Regularity Authority), to NOT cover the operation live. However, later on suddenly the news channels were vanished from all tv Cable network. Currently all news channels are not being show on cable networks in Pakistan. Reportedly all of this is being done by via PEMRA by ordering Cable networks to not show the News Channels.

Pakistani TV Channels Live

However, an alternate is watch these channels online. But last time I checked the live URLs of new channels like geo tv were also being blocked. As I was not able to access live.geo.tv.

In such situation there is one service on which you can rely on and its called TapMad TV (tapmad.com). TapMad.com have number of news channels available in list which can be watched live, moreover it have many entainment channels as well. For full list of channels available on TapMad Click Here, after reaching that page, you can also show channels by category like only new or only entertainment or sports channels etc.

TapMad not only provide live channels but also offer content like movies and pre-Aired tv shows etc. Live Channels are FREE but the movies and prerecorded dramas need premium membership which you can get by paying via your mobile balance.

Facebook, Twitter, Youtube, Instagram and Whatsapp Web Blocked in Pakistan Right Now

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Today in early morning government of Pakistan finally decided to use force against faizabad protestors in Islamabad. So they started an operation by thinking that it will be over in couple of hours and everything will be normal. But looks like the government’s plan of dispersing the protestors backfired. First, the forces fought at faizabad for six hours and than later on again to disperse them. But not only they were not successful but in reaction to the “forced action” attempt, many people in different cities of Pakistan took it to the streets and country wide protests started against the current government. In every city now there are many people protesting on streets and on many places conflicts were happened with police where lives and health of both parties (protestors and officials) were in risk. Some bad incidents reported.

facebook twitter instagram youtube banned in pakistan

Now after the situation was gone out of hands of government, for majority of internet users in Pakistan, social media is totally blocked. This may have only one reason, that videos and images of those conflict does not spread. The affected sites include Facebook, twitter, Instagram and even web version of whatsapp is blocked.

The blocked web version tells me one thing, who ever ordered these blockages, they ordered to block whatsapp too, but as after being block in middle east, whatsapp guys have implemented smart algorithms which transmit data through a number of domains and connected nodes, so this system is not very easy to block for any government or some entity.

This is again the irony here, instead of trying to contain the situation there people’s right to remain informed is being taken away from here. Not only all the major ISPs are blocking the social media websites and services but also all the news channels have been gone missing from the cable networks.

When is youtube opening in Pakistan?

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when youtube opening in pakistanFew days ago the Pakistan’s Minister for IT and Telecom (Anusha Rehman) had hinted opening of youtube in matter of just very few days. It was told that filter is ready and already have been tested. Story further claimed that this filter is worth millions, is acquired by Pakistan Telecommunication Company Limited (PTCL) and this filter will be able to block 4000 URLs only. I had objected that filter worth millions, so why its only capable of filtering only 4000 URLs but still many people were happy with this as at least the biggest video sharing website was going to open for Pakistanis.

We also had suspected that like other wondering stories this is also temporary measure from Anusha Rehman to get some publicity and  just calm the Pakistani people, who are waiting for this video sharing website, that work is under process at ministry. Also, we have already discussed that how critical it to get the website like Youtube in Pakistan as Ban is doing nothing but just only and only hurting the Pakistani People.

I am obviously not wanting the full opening of Youtube in Pakistan but I am only looking forward to Pakistani Government that they should do whatever other Muslim countries have did. Block the Blasphemous content and make the rest of website available to Pakistanis. Government can either block the content on its end or could have a contract with Google and they would do it on their end, which would be a more effective method to block all the copies of blasphemous content.

Many days are gone after she had hinted us and as we suspected, Anusha Rehman and her ministry is failed to take an action about the issue according to promises with Pakistani people. We would again advise our minister to concentrate more on ground work, put that firewall or filtering system in place and open all the resources up for Pakistanis which they deserve.

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Unbanning of youtube in Pakistan is still pending, Anusha Rehman busy in getting some free publicity

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youtube with anushaFew days ago we did a post about why and how ban on Youtube is only hurting Pakistanis. Soon after I finished as I was wandering on different Facebook pages, I cam across a story about unbanning youtube in Pakistan. Out of querulousness I done some research on that and whole Internet, I mean most of Pakistan sites and blogs were full of the same story. It was telling that Anusha Rehman, who is Federal Minister of IT and Telecom have hinted that youtube will open very soon in Pakistan.

Story also included the content like Pakistan already have a URL filtering system ready, which will operate via PTCL and is developed million of Dollars. Not only this, the circulating story also included text like it is already tested and will just allow us filtering and banning 4000 URLs. This caught my attention that a Software which cost millions will only filter out 4000 URLs, I was happy that ok at least they are doing something.

But seems like the Federal Minister of IT and Telecom from the new ruling party Pakistan Muslim League (Nawaz) have this habit of making news like our former Interior Minister Rehman Malik. Her statements are also similar as that of what Rehman Malik’s have been. On one side Anusha Rehman was warning Google few months back that we will even ban Google, on other side she is giving many statements about unbanning youtube.com from couple of months.

As soon as after Anusha took charge of IT and Telecom Ministry and given this statement about banning Google in Pakistan, I immediately had an idea that a person who does not know the importance of search engine like Google in today’s era, does not know any thing about telecom and specially Information Technology (IT). Though like former interior minister Rehman Malik our new IT and Telecom Minister had to face lots of criticism about her statement about banning Google. Also there is much of pressure from people about unbanning the youtube in the country on interior minister.

Despite that pressure seems like our IT and Telecom minister seem to do nothing but just giving some statements which keep people calm and give her some publicity as well so that people might think she is busy. You would have idea that people from this ruling party PML-N have a habit of looking very busy but producing much less, like some politician look very busy in resolving electricity shortage issue but end result is same. Same kind of load shedding is going on. Like statements of Rehman Malik, Anusha have also been coming up with statements like youtube will open soon, we are working on the issue.

Anusha you do not need to look busy, you just have to work on the real issue because I want that people of Pakistan do benefit from services which are available for rest of world. I want that Web Applications developer “Imran Zia” to use youtube video tutorial to learn new technologies, I want that student “Danish” to learn theories of physics via youtube video animations, I want that jobless Hafeez to learn some skill via youtube video tutorials from youtube and I want every Pakistani to get benefit from the services available to the whole world. And if you think, I am making this up, oh no, I am not, I have seen and heard many Pakistani people getting benefited from service like youtube in the past.

Youtube would be our first baby step, next would be paving the way for bringing the PayPal in to support the Pakistani Developers and Freelancers who are bringing in huge bulks of cash daily in Pakistan but have no support at all from government.

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