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Pakistan lifts YouTube ban for three minutes, only to find more blasphemy

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YouTube iPad
YouTube iPad

Pakistan's government lifted its three-month ban on YouTube yesterday, only to completely reinstate the block just three minutes later, according to The New York Times. The ban was first implemented in mid-September, in response to a highly controversial video that depicted the Prophet Muhammad in a blasphemous light. The video sparked worldwide protests, leading YouTube to preemptively block the video in countries like Egypt, Libya, India, and others.

Following widespread criticism from its own citizens that the ban constituted censorship, the Pakistani government chose to allow the site after taking steps to prevent offensive or blasphemous content from appearing in the region. However, after discovering that such content was still available, the government reinstated its ban just three minutes later. It's uncertain if or when Pakistan's government will make another attempt to unblock the site — but if it wants to shield its citizens from the outside world, it may be better off following Iran's lead to create its own state-run video sharing site.