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posted by LaminatorX on Tuesday September 02 2014, @03:02AM   Printer-friendly [Skip to comment(s)]
from the al-gebra dept.

Joanna Paraszczuk reports that Iranian Grand Ayatollah Makarem Shirazi says high speed internet is unethical and contrary to humanitarian principles adding that 3G and broadband internet are morally wrong, and that there need to be standards to prevent users from dangers such as “immoral and inhumane” videos and photos, rumors, and espionage. “It should not be assumed by some people that we are against these technologies. But the Western technology is like muddy and unsanitary water. Water is the lifeblood, but when it gets murky and unsanitary it must be purified,” says the ayatollah. The Grand Ayatollah’s comments come after one of Iran’s largest mobile operators, Irancell, announced this month that it would test 3G services to universities and government offices, and after Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said earlier this year that Iran should upgrade its internet services.

Iranian President Rouhani insists the internet is crucial to connect with the world of science, saying: "We cannot close the gates of the world to our younger generation. If we do not move towards the new generation of mobile today and resist it, we will have to do it tomorrow. If not, the day after tomorrow." BBC Middle East analyst Sebastian Usher says President Rouhani's comments will resonate in Iran, but it is unclear if they will carry any real weight. Iran's government cracked down on media freedom and internet access after widespread protests against the country's leaders in 2009, banning online services like Facebook, Twitter and YouTube. Since then, many Iranians have grown used to bypassing censorship controls by using proxy servers or other online tools.

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  • (Score: 5, Insightful) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday September 02 2014, @03:24AM

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday September 02 2014, @03:24AM (#88345)

    He didn't say fast internet was haram, he said fast and unfiltered was haram.
    Not all that different from what the British government has been saying. [torrentfreak.com]

    • (Score: 1) by blackpaw on Wednesday September 03 2014, @03:10AM

      by blackpaw (2554) on Wednesday September 03 2014, @03:10AM (#88747) Journal

      Yah, you can certainly rely on the Jerusalem Post for your daily dose of anti-Arab Hasbara.

  • (Score: 5, Funny) by M. Baranczak on Tuesday September 02 2014, @03:26AM

    by M. Baranczak (1673) on Tuesday September 02 2014, @03:26AM (#88347)

    Looks like the old man just discovered Goatse.

    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday September 02 2014, @06:39AM

      by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday September 02 2014, @06:39AM (#88389)

      He concluded that the Internet had stolen his soul when looking at Goatse was like looking into a mirror.

    • (Score: 1, Offtopic) by VLM on Tuesday September 02 2014, @11:35AM

      by VLM (445) Subscriber Badge on Tuesday September 02 2014, @11:35AM (#88449)

      I thought the poor SOB had read the fine print of his AT&T contract, I had about the same reaction to my contract phones. I was surprised to see he hates the tech itself and/or the content passing over the tech, given how AT&T, Sprint, Verizontal, and whatever other oligopoly providers still exist are widely acknowledged even by westerners as being the "Great Satans".

      Non-contract republic wireless all the way since the first beta testing wave for me.

  • (Score: 4, Funny) by c0lo on Tuesday September 02 2014, @03:27AM

    by c0lo (156) Subscriber Badge on Tuesday September 02 2014, @03:27AM (#88348) Journal

    3G and broadband internet are morally wrong, and that there need to be standards to prevent users from dangers such as “immoral and inhumane”

    He's absolutely right - those technologies are morally obsolete and a danger to young generation.
    Isn't it why 4G and optical fibre got developed?

    --
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aoFiw2jMy-0
    • (Score: 1) by Freeman on Thursday September 04 2014, @06:36PM

      by Freeman (732) on Thursday September 04 2014, @06:36PM (#89445) Journal

      Fiber-Optic Communications have been the backbone of the internet for a long time now. Fiber-Optics were being used for internet long before there was 3G internet.

      --
      "I said in my haste, All men are liars." Psalm 116:11
  • (Score: 3, Informative) by SlimmPickens on Tuesday September 02 2014, @03:30AM

    by SlimmPickens (1056) on Tuesday September 02 2014, @03:30AM (#88350)

    It seems that his website [makarem.ir] is behind a 2G connection.

    He's 'clarified' his stance on 3G, saying that he's not against technology, just western technology which is like muddy water.

    • (Score: 2) by c0lo on Tuesday September 02 2014, @04:14AM

      by c0lo (156) Subscriber Badge on Tuesday September 02 2014, @04:14AM (#88364) Journal

      He's 'clarified' his stance on 3G

      Well, as they say, clear as mud. I'm lost as to the meaning of "purifying western 3G".
      Like what? Are they going to change the handshake protocol between the phone and cell tower to a set of prayers to be exchanged between the caller and the muezzin on the minaret?

      --
      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aoFiw2jMy-0
      • (Score: 2) by q.kontinuum on Tuesday September 02 2014, @04:38AM

        by q.kontinuum (532) on Tuesday September 02 2014, @04:38AM (#88368) Journal

        Before we start to ridicule him for his purification-attempts, maybe we should first fix our western society with similar attempts? In Europe it's mainly filtering in many countries, in US it's more total surveillance. Maybe our governments enforced a "think of the children" into our providers handshakes?

        --
        Registered IRC nick on chat.soylentnews.org: qkontinuum
        • (Score: 3, Interesting) by c0lo on Tuesday September 02 2014, @05:34AM

          by c0lo (156) Subscriber Badge on Tuesday September 02 2014, @05:34AM (#88377) Journal

          Before we start to ridicule him for his purification-attempts, maybe we should first fix our western society with similar attempts?

          As an engineer, "purifying western technologies" sounds as strange a "christening the hammer before hitting nails in the head. 'Cause, you know, the hammer is made of steel and the steel is made with carbon and carbon is dirty; but the Holy Water will wash away the dirt".
          Why is it important? Because using metaphors and parables serves no technical purpose; at most, such a language is slippery/ambiguous enough to twist meanings and justify the persecution of whoever happens to be the scapegoat of the day.

          Now, look... technology is technology, content is content and mode of use is mode of use (and, truly enough, the first rule of the tautology club is the first rule of the tautology club [xkcd.org]).
          If his 'clarification of his stance' is so clear to you, can you please explain to me which one he thinks need "purification": technology, content or the way of using the technology?

          --
          https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aoFiw2jMy-0
          • (Score: 3, Interesting) by q.kontinuum on Tuesday September 02 2014, @05:47AM

            by q.kontinuum (532) on Tuesday September 02 2014, @05:47AM (#88381) Journal

            To me he made it very clear that the purification is needed for the content. He specifically mentioned the "harmful" photos and videos. I do not trust most new outlets to give an accurate enough translation to pick on his exact wording, especially when they see a chance to paint the Iranian religious leaders as backward zealots, and when there is not half a sentence in the article actually marked as a citation. Not picking on a single world and reading TFA, to me it is obvious that he criticises uncensored photos and videos, which become (much more) relevant with faster connectivity.

            And to avoid any misconception: I'm born western Europe, as were my parents, and if forced to pick a religion I'd personally probably go for the Spaghetti-Monster.

            --
            Registered IRC nick on chat.soylentnews.org: qkontinuum
            • (Score: 3, Interesting) by c0lo on Tuesday September 02 2014, @06:12AM

              by c0lo (156) Subscriber Badge on Tuesday September 02 2014, @06:12AM (#88385) Journal

              to me it is obvious that he criticises uncensored photos and videos, which become (much more) relevant with faster connectivity.

              Hmmm, let's see. The "photos and videos" are mentioned here: [jpost.com]

              However, Shirazi said 3G — third generation mobile communications technology — and broadband internet were morally wrong, and that there needed to be standards to prevent users from dangers such as “immoral and inhumane” videos and photos, rumors, and espionage.

              What about... rumours? Are the Iranians in Iran so pure no-one will ever think to gossip? Or, on the line of "the way of using the technology", the action may be punishable?
              What about the use of VPN gateways by the Iranians?
              What about the espionage? Does his concern have something to do with possible backdoors? Or is just a fear of "Stuxnet - strike two"? Is this concern related to: the content, the way of use or the technology itself?

              Engineer questions: why is it that only 3G is "a muddy water", but the currently available 2G is "clean"? How does his intention to "purify the technology" is going to be carried out?
              In other words, what the hell is he talking about? Because his 'clarifications' are more of a puzzle to my westernized mind (as I said, clear as mud).

              --
              https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aoFiw2jMy-0
              • (Score: 2) by LoRdTAW on Tuesday September 02 2014, @02:54PM

                by LoRdTAW (3755) on Tuesday September 02 2014, @02:54PM (#88520) Journal

                "In other words, what the hell is he talking about?"

                Todays population, even in developing nations are significantly smarter thanks to the internet. Have a question? Go search for it and either Wikipedia or some other site/blog/forum will have an answer even if it is wrong. And face it, many religions were written at a time when the vast majority of people couldn't even read or write let alone think for themselves. And to make matters worse, multiple people wrote passages and translated, transcribed them over a period of years. I would not be surprised of the telephone game didn't corrupt a lot of what we now know as the Bible, Koran and Torah which the others derived from. So it was easy to spoon feed them confusing and contradictory stories because they just didn't know any better and they lacked the ability to question it.

        • (Score: 3, Insightful) by M. Baranczak on Tuesday September 02 2014, @05:46AM

          by M. Baranczak (1673) on Tuesday September 02 2014, @05:46AM (#88380)

          Before we start to ridicule him for his purification-attempts, maybe we should first fix our western society with similar attempts?

          What, we can't do both at the same time?

          Back during the Cold War, whenever someone in the West brought up something bad that the Soviets were doing, the Soviet apologists would come back with "What about the Americans? They lynch the Negroes!". Which was absolutely true, but it didn't answer the original charge, it was just changing the subject.

  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday September 02 2014, @05:08AM

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday September 02 2014, @05:08AM (#88375)

    Fuck him.

    The West certainly has a significant (and growing) degenerate contingent, but I hardly think "The Grand Ayatollah" has any business preaching to anyone about anything. Or for that matter, any middle eastern head of state.

    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday September 02 2014, @07:02AM

      by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday September 02 2014, @07:02AM (#88391)

      Yeah, fuck him but also fuck google, apple, facebook, microsoft, nsa etc at the other end of the glitzy 3G interpipe. As in the man has got a point.

      • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday September 02 2014, @07:14AM

        by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday September 02 2014, @07:14AM (#88392)

        You forgot to fuck soylentnews, fucker.

        • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday September 02 2014, @07:49AM

          by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday September 02 2014, @07:49AM (#88402)

          But I didn't forget your mom.

          • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday September 02 2014, @08:38AM

            by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday September 02 2014, @08:38AM (#88412)

            And my mom is dead and you're a necrophile.

          • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday September 02 2014, @02:56PM

            by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday September 02 2014, @02:56PM (#88523)

            Oh SNAP! Did you just come up with that!!!! So original. I gotta call the comedy channel or whoever the fuck is in charge of hearing the most hilarious and original comeback on the planet.

    • (Score: 1, Informative) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday September 02 2014, @07:19AM

      by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday September 02 2014, @07:19AM (#88393)

      but I hardly think "The Grand Ayatollah" has any business preaching to anyone about anything.

      Isn't preaching the very description of his role as a religious leader?

  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday September 02 2014, @07:36AM

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday September 02 2014, @07:36AM (#88399)

    Sounds perfect, all things considered. Sign me up.

  • (Score: 2) by mtrycz on Tuesday September 02 2014, @09:36AM

    by mtrycz (60) on Tuesday September 02 2014, @09:36AM (#88428)
    --
    In capitalist America, ads view YOU!
  • (Score: 3, Interesting) by tangomargarine on Tuesday September 02 2014, @02:43PM

    by tangomargarine (667) on Tuesday September 02 2014, @02:43PM (#88512)

    I'm not a fan of the term either, but this seems to be a pretty clear case of it. Apparently it's not just limited to us pampered first-worlders.

    He'd rather have the whole Internet censored than just tell his fucking followers to exercise a bit of self-control and NOT VIEW THINGS THEY DON'T LIKE. Islam is all about self-control! It's right there in the name! "Submission" to the will of Allah.

    Obligatory xkcd [xkcd.com]

    --
    "Is that really true?" "I just spent the last hour telling you to think for yourself! Didn't you hear anything I said?"
    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday September 02 2014, @04:03PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday September 02 2014, @04:03PM (#88543)

      > Islam is all about self-control! It's right there in the name! "Submission" to the will of Allah.

      While you are using the term incorrectly, your usage is pretty clearly god-control, not self-control.

      • (Score: 2) by tangomargarine on Wednesday September 03 2014, @02:34PM

        by tangomargarine (667) on Wednesday September 03 2014, @02:34PM (#88914)

        No, the adherent controls his desires and impulses in order to follow the precepts of the religion. Saying that Allah is personally reaching down and forcing everyone to follow along is a bit pretentious. A large part of the point of many religions is that it requires conscious and constant effort on the part of the believer to "walk the path."

        --
        "Is that really true?" "I just spent the last hour telling you to think for yourself! Didn't you hear anything I said?"