RIM and Indonesia reach mutual agreement on pornographic content filtering

By Yousif Abdullah on 19 Jan 2011 09:36 am EST

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RIM has promised on Monday that it will meet Indonesia's request to filter out pornographic content on BlackBerry smartphones in the next couple of days, as stated by a spokesman of the Indonesian government. As Indonesia is both home to the world's greatest Muslim population and a massive amount of BlackBerry smartphone addicts, RIM's commitment to abide by the country's requirements is pretty much a given. RIM Managing Director of Southeast Asia, Gregory Wade, has stated that talks with the six Indonesian service providers about the matter have already been initiated and that the issue will be resolved with mutual satisfaction. And, as per the request of the Indonesian government, RIM is also going to set up local server in the country.

Indonesia is not alone in discussing such matters, though. Kuwait had also asked a similar favor back in August, 2010. Although RIM promptly agreed to block 3,000 pornographic Web sites at the request of Kuwait's communication ministry, it should be noted that Kuwait did not threaten to suspend BlackBerry services as certain other Middle Eastern countries did. But still, in either case, I am very happy to see RIM's active willingness to engage in these affairs and provide everyone affected with an amicable solution. Keep it up, Waterloo!

Source: Mercurynews

Reader comments

RIM and Indonesia reach mutual agreement on pornographic content filtering


It is prohibited to view pornography from an Islamic point of view and muslims tend to take their religion seriously. I can almost assure you that this agreement is what the majority of the Indonesian population wants. So, not a question of freedom, but a matter of abiding Islamic law.


I completly understand taking Religion seriously. But for the minority that does not, It then becomes a question of freedom. For those abiding by Islamic Law it is a non-issue I understand.

Check my post and check out my group "Restore BlackBerry Internet Service (BIS) in Pakistan" on Facebook and a cause that goes by the same name on Causes.com. Propose to me what should I do. Also: check out my other post on this thread to get the links from there with ease. Everyone is welcome to view both and join if you believe my efforts are worth it.


Indonesia is supposed to be a secular state. But that's being overrun by religious interests that are pressuring their way to cripple the democracy. Religious groups that have fought hard to make sure their religion,and the way they interpret it, is the one being obeyed.

For a country of 240 million to be up in arms about pornography is ridiculous. It's also step backwards for a country that has tried very hard to pull itself from a pit of corruption.

Point taken, and you are especially correct about the part of how religious context is being interpreted. I strongly believe that social norms in these countries have been severely mixed up with religion, but when the country's top officials think along the same lines as "they" do, there's little you can do about it as a citizen – especially if you're not a muslim.

Still, it is good to see that RIM is willing to offer help in these matters, whether correct from a liberty point of view or not.


Er, isn't there a difference between choosing not to view porn and not having the choice. I'm vegetarian but wouldn't want to see the sale of meat banned - it's on me to live according to my beliefs, if I don't then I'm the one who's at fault. Why is this different?


In my almost one and an half year of owning a Blackberry, i can't remember to have any attempt to open any pornographic content from the Blackberry. It just when this issue brought up by our Minister of Communication, Mr. Tifarul Sembiring that i try to open such website from my device, and i can assure you, it has not been a good experience because it has such limited screen to view the content, i would rather use others media if i would do so.

The minister of communication has been a target of many people who dislike him because of a such move, that just a silly things to brought up. We hare have so many issues that is just more important than that, such as the distribution of affordable Internet availability to more people.




Visit these pages and you'll feel like crying. If you thought Indonesia is bad, think again. Pakistan is the worsest place to be if you're even as slightly in love with RIM or BlackBerry. And that's been ever since May 20th, 2010. These would divulge to you the greatest tragedy that has ever happened to Pakistani telecom sector, and worse still, it continues to persist with no imminent, looming end... Please tell me what to do.

I have written as much as 50 emails to PTA (Pakistan Telecommunication Authority) but of absolutely no use. Please tell me how can I contact and convince RIM to implement a similar filtering solution for Pakistan so that we can get rid of this hellish scenario and see the dawn of BlackBerry once more. Will be much appreciated.

"As Indonesia is both home to the world's greatest Muslim population and a massive amount of BlackBerry smartphone addicts..."

Greatest? A little biased, at best. Largest, perhaps (if that is what you were trying to get at), but saying greatest is like claiming the Bears are better than the Packers...

Oh who am I kidding the Bears are totally better! :)

My bad absolutely, the definition I was looking for was largest / biggest. No bias in my content (or so I try to keep it). Good catch, though!


P.S. I know nil about Bears and Packers, but to each his own I guess :)

Anyone half familiar with the internet should realize that there is no such thing as content blocking on the internet, circumventing such blocks are trivial, especially with half-assed attempts such as this one.

As for the religious justifications, you do whatever floats your boat, just don't shove it down others' throat!

One upside from this is the local rim servers, browsing speeds are utter crap here in indonesia. almost unusable. Despite being the third largest and probably the fastest growing blackberry market, we have been almost virtually ignored by RIM, having no form of first party presence whatsoever.

You have not been "virtually ignored" by RIM. What about the news about RIM launching a branch in indonesia? Or PT Research in Motion? And as a quick reminder, BlackBerry Developer Conference Asia took place in Indonesia too! I think of all the countries (outside North America), Indonesia is one of the more blessed ones as RIM has been very active there. A slow network connection can stem from many sources and as RIM has really done much (and hopefully will do more) for Indonesia, I think it's time to give a bit of credit where due. But then again, I know nothing about the service providers in Indonesia, so I could be wrong.


I just realized that the filtering has come to affect, when i attempt to open the pornographic content, it redirect me to http://block.nawala.org.

So the Phone carrier here has found the a way to just allow third party filtering content done the filtering and not RIM that doing so, i think.

I don't know whether it the same for all carrier users (i'm using IM3, INDOSAT), need to be confirm by other user that using different carrier.


Its blocked on my BB but its working perfectly on my home ADSL service. But again, it doesn't matter anyway as the loading speed on the BB cools me down even before the page or picture if fully loaded.

So what. They cant view porn. It isnt going to stop half a billion men from fwapping it in the privacy of their own homes.

Hooray, so now this pompous, fake medal wearing git, Titifool, the pitiful, can swan around within his circle of religious zealots, bragging how he single-handedly dictated terms that give no thought to the freedom of others who do not share his religion. Such a truly democratic ideal....... As for the poster proclaiming that Muslims take Islam seriously, one must wonder that if they do, why is there a need to ban pornography, as surely their commitment and fervour would discipline them to not seek and view such unclean actions (and you cannot deny Islamic commitment and fervour can you?)..... Democracy in Indonesia? hahahahaha thats a joke. The power is still held by the same "fatcat generals" from previously, who are still looting the country's coffers for their own use, and nepotism will ensure that as the old commies die out, so their sons, or other "groomed" family members will "inherit" said positions.... This country has many years ahead of it before it "develops" into a true democracy....

Ok, I guess I just don't understand why they are asking RIM to filter things out when they could just ask the wireless providers to do the filtering? Also, why even need the filter? If the religion says pornography is bad and people there take it seriously, then where is the problem? It's a circular issue...

That's like a city that is nearly 100% filled with vegans creating a law that bans the eating of meat.

I'm Indonesian and in my opinion this case came only from several groups of radical Moslem in Indonesia. In Indonesia itself, a lot of people oppose this thing. You can see it in Twitter

"I can almost assure you that this agreement is what the majority of the Indonesian population wants. "
Uhmm.. I'm sorry, no offence but... I'm guessing you're not Indonesian? or you might've not done your research correctly ._. (Twitter's the easiest way really, it wass on the Indonesian trending topic for weeks!)
The majority of Indonesians are actually against this whole thing, not for the porn but for the sake of freedom! I mean, behind Tiffie (Tifatul Sembiring)'s porn excuse was so that RIM would open a server here and every message that we send via BlackBerries can be filtered and basically be monitored by the govt.

So yeah, us Indonesians are just BEGGING for this to happen (Sarcasm, sorry!)