Internet censorship is nothing new in Thailand, but lately it has gone from bad to worse. Many of you probably wonder why Internet is so slow and unreliable in Thailand, resulting in a lot of request ending on a blank page or truncated content. This is not only because of poor infrastructure. Just look at the bottom of your screen and get the answer : waiting for w3.mict.go.th….
This is the address of the Ministry of Information and Technology of Thailand…..Instead of investing money for a better internet, Thailand is investing a lot of money in worst and slower Internet by putting a filter on every connection from inside Thailand, using the so called “war room”, a huge tech center in Bangkok suburbs specially equipped for filtering and censorship.
Technicians in the war room have blocked 70,000 Internet pages over the past four years, and the vast majority — about 60,000 — were banned for insults to the monarchy, according to Mr. Surachai. (Most of the other pages were blocked for pornography.)
Thus even you are not browsing pornography or dodgy content, your request has to go through “The ministry” filter for approval and checking that it is not on the banned list.
A survey of Ponemon Institute’s Second Annual Cost of Cyber Crime Study (2011) recently stated that one-third (32 percent) of executives say their country’s economy relies on cyber infrastructure to an overwhelming extent.
A further 54 percent say cyber infrastructure is at least of equal importance to their country’s growth as other factors. When executives were asked the same question with respect to the economic growth of their organizations, 41 percent of respondents said they considered cyber infrastructure more important to their organization’s growth than other factors, and 48 percent considered it of equal importance.
Therefore, Thailand censorship by deliberately slowing Internet and crippling the country digital infrastructure is a huge drawback to be considered by foreign investors.
Thanks for this article. Rachel, your site is not banned anymore. How did you manage to unblock it?
Our website has just been blocked today and is redirecting to http://w3.mict.go.th/.
Getting really really sick of Thailand and it’s censorship. Does the Thai government really want farangs like me to tell everyone what a terrible place Thailand is for censorship and not to come here.