Thailand gets with the program - and then some...

I was intrigued to see that Thailand, which used to be something of a haven for illegal prOn (allegedly -Ed) has been smartening its act up as regards the Internet since the coup last September.

But the government there (and I use this term loosely) may have gone too far, as reports over the weekend suggest that around 50,000 Web sites were banned last week alone, with the government also shutting down most of the Internet prOn industry as well.

As well as political blogs, anti-monarchy sites, anti-government sites and just about everything against the system.

According to some reports that have leaked out since the great Internet shutdown in Thailand last week, the government has gone over the top in shutting down anything with a whiff of subversion about it.

But hang on, the official line from the Thai IT minister (Sithichai Pookaiyaudom) is that less than two dozen sites have been banned under his leadership.

Well, if it says so on the government Web site, then it must be true, mustn't it?

I remember Thailand. I've never been there, but I had a girlfriend called Josie who was half-Thai. I worked with her at the local hospital when I was a nurse (whaaa? Ed).

She went over to Thailand in the late 1970s and sent me a letter a few years later, claiming she was being forced into prostitution.

I seem to remember that she needed around $150 for the airfare home, which I duly sent but, strangely enough, I never heard from her again.

Which just goes to show that (a) I was a dirty old man even at the age of 19, and (b) even I get suckered occasionally....


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