A few things I did not know before Government Of India ‘s blanket-ban on Blogger/Typepad. — a ban whose supposed purpose we learn is to keep SIMI terrorists from passing love-notes between themselves.
1. SIMI-ians exclusively use Blogger and Typepad to communicate. Which is why these are the only blogging platforms that are blocked. SIMI stays clear of WordPress (too dynamic for static fundamentalists), Rediff blogs (because they don’t like the template), O3 Indiatimes (because even they disapprove of a paper that sells editorial space), and Yahoo 360 (yes even SIMI activists have some sense). And like everyone else, they have never heard of MSN Spaces.
2. SIMI activists may handle RDX and gelatin with dexterity but have trouble understanding the concept of proxies by which website-blocking can easily be circumvented. As a result, a ban on blogger totally brings them down to their knees—especially when they don’t get their daily fix of desihotties.blogspot.com
3. SIMI terrorists do not know the use of bulletin boards —the gazillions of them that are on the Net. Hence cutting off blogger/typepad will reduce them to headless chickendom.
4. Enforcing a ban on Blogger/Typepad/Geocities will fool the SIMI people into thinking that India has officially become Pakistan (where access to many blogs are blocked) and now that their mission has been accomplished, they may let their guard down.
5. Lakshadweep and Andaman Nicobar Islands are the only places where there are no SIMI activists. (According to the wise sages in power, these places are excluded from the ban)
6. If “somebody” in the government blocks some sites and prevents Indians from accessing information and expressing their own thoughts, how is it anyone’s problem? (read the “official response” to this ban here) After all the government know best and is accountable to no-one—-certainly not to its own citizens.
7.[Update] Immunodiagnostics and hormone analysis are instruments of terror. Why? Because “Diagnostics System Lab” —a medical lab that does precisely that (URL http://www.bloodspot.com) finds itself on the list of hate sites that GOI has deemed we are not supposed to read. Maybe, some backroom boy yelled blogspot and someone else heard bloodspot—-but that’s just a conjecture…I am sure the authorities have checked and rechecked the websites they wanted to ban and such a mistake is beyond the realms of possibility.
8.[Update] The government is engaged in a war with “common sense”. No I do not say that figuratively. According to Shivam, one of the blogspot blogs that reportedly made it onto the government’s list is http://commonense.blogspot.com. The said blog, whose title is the somewhat apt “Common Sense for Dummies” has only one post, dated May 20, 2004 that says:
“Common-sense” and “common sense”, the common-sense alternatives for a common-sense blog, are already taken.
Deeply subversive—-after all, as we all know, common sense can bring the government down.