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Below is the published “Kartepe Criteria” which was formed on the last day of the 2nd “Internet Content Regulation Workshop” held between 20 and 22 April 2010 in Kocaeli-Kartepe.
20 –22 April 2010 Kartepe / Kocaeli
Internet opens new prospects for the humanity and it should be underlined that it also provides an effective tool for free transportation of the knowledge and new ideas. In the use of Internet as a tool, anonymity and the privacy are very important values that should be protected. Knowing that Internet could also be misused to harm the individual rights and freedom, there has to be some restrictions in use of Internet. However, the restrictions about Internet should not touch the soul of basic humanity rights and freedom, and should only be applied by juridical decisions based on laws which are in accordance with the universal laws.
Therefore, participants of this workshop esteem it a duty to announce the following principles to the public.
PRINCIPLE 1 – Web 2.0 sites (blogs, forums, video sites, social networks and etc…), which are playing a very important role in distribution of new ideas and opinions, should be perceived as a part of polyphony and democracy.
PRINCIPLE 2 – All the actors of Internet should run a primary self-control mechanism (pro-active intervention) and adopt a “Warn and Remove” principle in order to prevent illegal contents. Public authority should support the self-control mechanisms and civil initiatives.
PRINCIPLE 3 – Access restriction enforcements should only be possible with a juridical decision and there should be supporting advance canvass reports and legal justifications. Appeal procedure should be configured in a rapid and effective way. Access restriction enforcements which could be decided by Public Prosecutors or the lawful authority in case of an urgency situation should be subjected to a Juridical Approval in 24 hours. If the juridical approval is dismissed, the access restriction should be removed ipso facto.
PRINCIPLE 4 – Access restriction decisions should be perceived as only and only an ultima ratio prevention measure and should be given with caring moderation and proportionality.
PRINCIPLE 5 – The appliance of the web-site access restriction decisions should be performed by TIB (Telecommunication and Communication Directorship) and related regulations should be organized accordingly. Restriction reasons, related justifications, the duration of the measure and appeal procedure should be clearly stated in both restriction decisions and at the entrance page of the restricted web site.
PRINCIPLE 6 – The scope of the catalogue crimes described in Act 5651 should be reconsidered.
PRINCIPLE 7 – In spite of wholly restricting access to a web site, a new approach that restricts access to only the harmful and illegal content in the relevant site should be adopted and the providers of illegal and harmful content should be put on trial. International character of the Internet should be taken into consideration and an international cooperation should be provided. Efforts in signing the EC Cyber Crimes Agreement should be hastened.
PRINCIPLE 8 – The measures that provide the accuracy, irrevocability and the integrity of log files recorded by access and domain providers should be taken. These log files should be all confidential unless claimed by legal authorities and for gathering evidence.
PRINCIPLE 9 – There should be an Internet news media definition with the consideration of the free nature of Internet, and Internet news media should benefit from the all punitive responsibilities and lawsuit rights and freedoms granted to traditional media.
PRINCIPLE 10 – The main mission of the government about Internet should be limited to education and awareness rising among society starting from elementary schools. Specialists should provide content classification in order to protect children from harmful content and families should be stimulated to use free children filters.
PRINCIPLE 11 – Child Pornography is a very important issue. This issue should not be only stated in Act 5651. There should be a more special regulation on this problem.
PRINCIPLE 12 – There should be a more clear authority regulation about the crimes committed on Internet environment. Specialization in justice should be emphasized on and expertness should be more functional. There should be a definition for inter-institutional cooperation.
PRINCIPLE 13 – The education and awareness of all the executers should be provided.
These principles, which are published as the “Kartepe criteria”, are reflecting the majority opinion of the participants and there could be some objections from different participants on different clauses.