Friday, June 6, 2014

Is Indonesia humiliating itself? CHAPTER II - Pointless Internet Censorship

So in the light of the 106th year of Indonesia's awakening (although it has passed days ago...) we were struck by some of the unsatisfying cases, one of them is the unsettling National Exam of this year that it used out-of-topic questions from every student's three-year education in either Junior High and High School on certain subjects. This has raised rage for all students, to the point that someone ended her life over her failure at doing the exam. Thankfully, an initiative intends to make the exam a benchmark tool for all schools nationwide, and hope that with changing its system, the education in Indonesia will see a better future. I also wanted to point out a case happened at one of the International schools in Jakarta on the last post too, but I realized that not only would it make the post a TL;DR one but also raping won't be included as one of the topics here in my blog.

However, if I were to do so, the only thing I would say is this: Have the International schools do intense checkings. Raping is outright pointless, especially at International schools.


The second chapter of the series takes the topic of internet censorship in Indonesia which enrages everyone, because the site the Minister of Technology blocked are "innocent" sites that doesn't appear to contain porn. The minister's aim to eradicate porn is actually good, but did they went too far? We think so. Vimeo was blocked due to such circumstance, along with other sites like Reddit, Imgur, and others. Vimeo is actually a video-sharing site that offers high quality videos and is a site where content creators post their creations and video portfolios for everyone to see. The site also implements the rule of anti-porn contents, but sadly the implementation might be a bit loose from one of the local news I read (source forgotten).

The interface of Vimeo. This site is blocked by the Indonesian Minister of Technology due to a dirty twerk video shown in one of the political party's campaign. Some said that this is to discredit the party.

Founded in 2004 by Jake Lodwick and Zach Klein, it offers the same service as YouTube where it allows users to share and view their videos. The name is actually an anagram of "Movie", but is also a play on words "Video" and "Me". While Lodwick and Klein left in 2007 and 2008 respectively, Dae Mellencamp became the CEO of the site until March 19, 2012 with Kerry Trainor taking place. As of September 2013, its search feature requires Google Analytics to work properly and users of Firefox and Chrome web browsers cannot search on Vimeo without disabling privacy protection. As of the end of 2013, Vimeo attracted 100 million unique visitors per month and more than 22 million registered users worldwide, with 15% of its traffic came from mobile devices.

Vimeo in 2007 has its glory days due to support in high definition playbacks (1280 x 720 / 720p), which made it the first video sharing site to support consumer HD, with uploaded HD videos automatically converted to 720/30p VP6 flash video. Since August 2010, all videos are encoded into H.264 for HTML5 support. All videos uploaded before were re-encoded. Non-Plus users can upload up to 500 MB of videos per week, and up to one HD video per week (additional HD videos uploaded within the same week are encoded to SD).

In 2008 Vimeo unveiled its $60-per-year Vimeo Plus package, which allows users additional weekly uploads (up to 5 GB), unlimited HD videos, unlimited creation of channels, groups and albums, no ads, HD embeds, 2-pass video re-encoding that results in higher quality, priority encoding, and more. The arrival of Vimeo Plus also meant the downgrade of the free version, which up to that point also enjoyed unlimited HD re-encodings per week and unlimited creation of groups/albums/channels.

Since February 2010, Plus users can choose to re-encode their 1080p upload as either 1080p or 720p. As time goes on, the site offers unlimited HD embeds, and users can upload that are up to five gigabytes of footage. This makes it possible for full length, high-definition feature films to be uploaded to Vimeo by Vimeo Plus users. In 2011, it introduces Vimeo PRO for business and commercial use only, offering 50GB of storage, 250k plays, advanced analysis and third-party video player support.


It turns out that Indonesia isn't the first to block Vimeo from our ISPs; India in 2012 did it under the orders of Department of Telecommunications without any stated reasons until it is stated that the copyright infringement of Indian films were the cause of this one-week ban. LH Harish Ram of Copyright Labs, Chennai, wrote on his Twitter account that he had not asked for the entire URLs to be blocked but only specific URLs where infringement was taking place. Contrary to what Ram claimed on Twitter, his letter about Dhammu clearly asks for 272 URLs to be blocked and these are complete URLs, not specific webpages. June 15 of the same year, the Madras high court took note of the controversy and clarified that only those URLs which are infringing copyright can be blocked, not entire websites, and the ban was lifted. As of May 2014, Vimeo is accessible in India.

It is a different story in Turkey though as the site is blocked by the court order on January 9 2014 without any reason.


This meme was made popular to make fun of Minister of Communications's action of banning innocent sites; Vimeo is one of them. My only question: Is Tifatul Sembiring ever a smart "object"? I don't think so...

Tifatul Sembiring, Indonesia's Communications Minister tweeted from his personal account that video sharing site Vimeo would be banned. Citing Indonesia’s controversial anti-pornography law, passed in 2008, the miniister said the site included displays of "nudity or nudity-like features". The ban came at a moment when films made in Indonesia had begun to attract attention on the world stage, with Joshua Oppenheimer’s The Act of Killing joining the ranks of the most acclaimed documentaries of all time. It might look as a your run-of-the-mill ban but the stupidity lied in the process of the banning, even the reason for the blocking.

The ban took place when the Minister of Communication witnessed that there is a video showcasing a female singer's twerk at a campaign for one of Indonesia's political parties: the Prosperous Justice Party (PKS - "Partai Keadilan Sejahtera"). The problem lied on the see-through wardrobe the singer wore and the twerk she did, and as the minister spotted the video, the video-sharing site's ban took place where it ordered the Trust+ (Trust Positive) team to order all ISPs to block it, but only some who really did it. This ban caught the anger of the Indonesian netizens as they criticize the illability to ban just the video, and only capable to ban the site as a whole. Other sites the minister claimed as sources of porn are Reddit and Imgur, among others unlisted here.

In the light of this turn of events, the Ministry of Communications wrote a letter to Vimeo requesting that pornographic contents on the site is deleted. A day after Vimeo denied that the site contains pornography. Vimeo's Director of Communications Jessica Casano-Antonellis stated that it does not allow pornographic contents and only accepts artistic nudity (read: non-sexual nudity), and not pornographic contents. She also stated that she is investigating the fact that the site is blocked due to pornography and hope that she could fix the service soon.

On 14th May, Vimeo received the letter from the Ministry of Communications, and seven days later it sent a letter to the Ministry saying that the Ministry should re-deliberate their decision and that, as mentioned, it doesn't allow pornographic contents, as stated in its two page-long letter. Also stated is the history of its service and the fact that the site is praised for its design and video player qualities and not a pornography site.

This is how Indonesia's Ministry of Communication played its WTF factor, just like the Ministry of Education did to the students in this year's National Exam. As predicted, the blockage has taken the rage of Indonesian netizens and is a form of the Minister's greedy act and that he (the Minister Tifatul Sembiring) has brought the Ministry back to the lighting department era. Also, the blockage is not fair knowing that not only is it snubs other sites that has more pornography than Vimeo has (example: YouTube. YT is not blocked because it has its Indonesian representatives to report abusive contents) but also is the Ministry focused to only one category involving artistic nudity; "art of nakedness" is one of them. Michael A Cheah stated that such category is made by users and because of that, it doesn't show Vimeo's approval.

The controversial Anti-Pornography laws has finally taken its toll, to an extent that it blocked innocent sites as its target, even artistic nudity is subject to this. As @donnybu said on Twitter, the transparent, accountable, feasible and professional internet governance in Indonesia is very needed knowing the fact that everyone could block anything as they see fit. Indonesia's creative field has seemed to be burnt away. Where in the world content creators can post their visual portfolios? When in the world Indonesian fandom fanatics would post their fan fictions of their OTPs and other shippings? Where Indonesians can get a swift, no-bullshit image hosting? And why Indonesians can't get a taste of Reddit?

As of this writing, "innocent" sites other than Vimeo like Reddit, Imgur, and FanFiction.Net has been blocked, and whenever one is to access the site, it will redirect them to Internet Filtering page.


...of course to just block the video and warn the uploader, easy as that, but deliberate the video whether it's a pornography or not beforehand. There's no need to block the whole site as it brings the rage to those who knew that the site doesn't contain porn. That's as the same as if you would burn someone's house for a school bullying. The Minister has to know more about the sites so if he were to block the site he does it in a reasonable way, not by brute force that eventually is pointless.

Indonesia also need to understand what artistic nudity is, and how it is different from pornography that its purpose is simply for artistic purposes, as its name suggests. In conclusion, just like Ministry of Education, the Ministry of Communications has a mental of an "Indon". No offense, but the netizens including me have already seen it, and they are responsible for having Indonesian internet being laughable by other countries.

This also brings up the second chapter's conclusion that the minister should be capable of knowing the sites first and the issues that are in the site, especially regarding a "porn" video hosted on an innocent video-sharing site due to the site's loose implementation of no-nudity Terms of Service. With the Indonesian presidential election on the horizon, following the changes in every ministry structures, we hope that the next Minister of Communication is the more IT-capable person who knows what he does and what he is doing. The next Minister of Education also has one job: to improve Indonesia's education, eradicating stress on students due to final exam and making way for a better, distributed, education system that can cater student's abilities and morals more, because for these two chapters I fleshed out what mistakes these two ministers had and what should have been done to make a win-win situation for everyone.

In the final chapter, we will cover the Indonesian people's mental's fault. Lately, certain Indonesians acted in an unsettling manner in different ocassions, including blaming an innocent person and destructing maintained parks. The two Ministries featured throughout the series has already had a mental of an "Indon" for your information due to their misconducts. Meanwhile it's encouraged to post your "HUEHUEHUE"s in the comments, regardless of who you are and where are you from, whenever you want to laugh at Indonesia's internet governance or just point out your thoughts. If this site were to be closed by the Minister, then I had to kill myself...

Various news on



  1. The problem is on the moral of Indonesian's people itself. They cant control their urges/desires/etc. They never self-reflecting but blaming others for tempting them. Hypocrite.


  3. Indonesia:
    1. Sarang Teroris
    2. Negara Terkorup no. 1 di dunia
    3. Prostitusi terbesar se-asean (dolly)

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