in Society, User Rights

Telegram censorship

Pavel Durov, founder and CEO of Telegram messenger, say that they shut down three Telegram channels that incited violence against doctors and health officials.

There’s a sentence at the end of his note, he said “It’s OK to fight for your rights. It’s not OK to harm other people.”

Censorship restricts us from actually knowing what was the target, what it meant to do, and how would it impact people’s lives. Censorship restricts us from knowing what was the intention and was it good or bad. Another problem with censorship is that it doesn’t actually change the world outside.

Those who say we should harm a doctor who says we should lock up unvaccinated people, will do it eventually in a way. Censoring their belief won’t change them, it even can’t stop spreading such ideas. Nobody, absolutely nobody, will think that “maybe I’m wrong” after being censored.

None of their audience won’t think “maybe I shouldn’t listen to that person” after censoring that person. We don’t (and won’t) see such thing in real world.

Censorship is usually a form of surrender to power, which is understandable, but some people like Durov want to justify their surrender with a moral view. They want to hide behind one moral issue in order to hide another immorality. Like, if I didn’t do it, something would’ve happened to people; wrong Pavel, you just censored a channel, you didn’t change any view.

One would argue that censoring such channels would stop spreading such ideas. I would argue that one who wants to spread this kind of ideas would find its ways. They won’t be restricted or limited to one Telegram channel and Telegram is not the only place for them, it’s not even the safest.

Do you really think censoring people will stop their belief and ideas from spreading? Have you learned nothing from history?