SourceForge Simi Unblocks Syria, Sudan,Iran, N.Korea & Cuba- Freedom Loving Admins: Unblock Now

9 Feb, 2010

Population Syria	Sudan	Cuba	Iran	North Korea

We waited for few days and nobody wrote about  it, so we moved on and broke the news with a guest post from Abdulrahman Idlbi as we were upset when SourceForge the world’s largest open source software hosting website, blocked around 171 million people from Syria, Sudan, Iran, N. Korea & Cuba: from downloading open source software, a complete breach to the open source definition section 5 and 6:

5. No Discrimination Against Persons or Groups
The license must not discriminate against any person or group of persons.
6. No Discrimination Against Fields of Endeavor

And a direct contradiction to Hillary Clinton’s Internet freedom speech that cited China, Iran, Saudi Arabia and Egypt among countries that censored the Internet or harassed bloggers!

3 days after the blockade news, which caused massive out rage all over the web such as this, sourceforge issued an announcement saying that they are not happy, but they have to comply with  U.S. laws or they will face possible penalties including fines and imprisonment.

SourceForgeHowever, Today SourceForge made a forward step ahead, instead of blocking all software downloads to innocent people of these countries now project admins can unblock them, if they ” conclude that your project is *not* subject to export regulations, or any other related prohibitions,” according to SF announcement.

This is a great move by SF, however the sad part about it that the blocking is enforced by default to all projects! which is not really a solution. as Khaled al-Horani a web developer from Syria told ArabCrunch:

‘I am a web developer, I opensource tools daily, and most of these tools are hosted on SF. Today, I wanted to prepare a new server with some tools like PHPMyAdmin and I couldn’t download it because it’s hosted on Sourcefoge. Many important application for web developers and programs and even for normal people, are also hosted on SF which I can’t download and use it now for my work. All projects’ download pages now take you to a white page instead of the old page which told you that you are prohibited to download from SF. Actually I don’t trust SF anymore! do they telling us lies? like “Some good news: SourceForge removes blanket blocking”. I think this step will affect the picture of Opensource in people mind’s for long time.”

ArabCrunch has emailed SF to clarify its stance of why not whitelisting all projects by default, As how would project admins will know about this feature?! unless they follow SF blog everyday!

We will also email google to know if they will put less restriction to the 170 million blocked people at Code.Google.com

For now, if you are a project admin on SourceForge who believes in free open-source, its principles and in the freedom of people to innovate without discrimination, please go to:

Develop -> Project Admin -> Project Settings to find a new section called Export Control. and change the export setting. After that, all users will be able to download your project files as they did before SF last blockhead.

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  1. uberVU - social comments  |  February 9th, 2010 at 12:55 AM #

    Social comments and analytics for this post…

    This post was mentioned on Twitter by ArabCrunch: SourceForge Simi Unblocks Syria, Sudan,Iran, N.Korea & Cuba- Freedom Loving Admins: Unblock Now: http://bit.ly/bdVFWT

  2. Twitter Trackbacks for SourceForge Simi Unblocks Syria, Sudan,Iran, N.Korea & Cuba- Freedom Loving Admins: Unblock Now [arabcrunch.com] on Topsy.com  |  February 9th, 2010 at 1:33 AM #

    [...] SourceForge Simi Unblocks Syria, Sudan,Iran, N.Korea & Cuba- Freedom Loving Admins: Unblock Now arabcrunch.com/2010/02/sourceforge-simi-unblocks-syria-sudaniran-n-korea-cuba-freedom-loving-admins-unblock-now.html – view page – cached SourceForge Simi Unblocks Syria, Sudan,Iran, N.Korea & Cuba- Freedom Loving Admins: Unblock Now [...]

  3. security war  |  February 10th, 2010 at 6:38 PM #

    he opened again i heard that

  4. SourceForge Blocked Users From Syria, Sudan, Iran, N. Korea & Cuba  |  February 12th, 2010 at 2:23 PM #

    [...] same ArabCrunch reported this week that SourceForge somehow reconsidered the ban by allowing project admins to unblock [...]

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