This page is currently focused on the Facebook ban of May 2010. Please see also:

General Information[]


2010 onwards[]



Our Demands[]


Key Activists / Organizations[]


Banned Websites since[]

September 17, 2012 ISLAMABAD: Pakistan’s Prime Minsiter Raja Pervez Ashraf has ordered immediate shutdown of video-sharing website Youtube in the aftermath of protests against anti-Islam film “Innocence of Muslims,” which is still available on the website, DawnNews reported on Monday. Continue reading

Press Coverage[]


Awareness Raising Events[]


Facebook Ban of May 2010[]


Apple-bans-facebook (1).jpg

On May 19th the Lahore High Court issued a notice to the Pakistan Telecommunication Authority requesting a ban on the Social Networking site, Facebook ...Continued

With immediate effect Pakistan's blog-sphere and Twitter-sphere jumped into action to protest the ban. A Twiter hashtag, #FBPkBan and #PkBan was created where Freedom Advocates, Activist, Technology Professionals and Entrepreneurs from the Pakistani diaspora have displayed an outcry at the recent High Court notice.

Following the Facebook blackout, on Thursday May 20th PTA implements yet another ban on YouTube, Wikipedia. Twitter was the last site to fall victim on Friday, May 21st.

Presently leading the campaign are Civil Society Members against Internet Censorship -- @sabeen, @DrAwab, @arrafiq, @sanasaleem, @ramlas, @kidvai, @abidbeli, @ifaqeer

Other members from the Blogosphere, Technology and Business community are encouraged to join the movement in defense of Internet Freedom in Pakistan.

Our demands:[]

1. The right to freely express our opinions without fear of threats and violence
2. An end to Internet Censorship and en-masse banning of websites

Review press releaseendorsed by:

1. Uks Research Centre-Islamabad – Tasneem Ahmer, Director
2. Shirkat Gah – Women’s Resource Centre – Fauzia Viqar
3. Aamir Raza Memon – Center for Peace & Civil Society
4. Pakistan ICT Policy Monitors Network
5. Bytes for All, Pakistan
6. Digital Rights Institute, Pakistan
7. PeaceNiche, Karachi
8. I.A. Rehman – Human Rights Activist
10. Pakistan Science and Engineering Foundation

PTA Press Release[]

Islamabad: Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) has directed all concerned operators in Pakistan to block website till further orders.

These directions have been issued in compliance with the directions issued by Ministry of IT & Telecom (MoIT) in view of decision of the Honorable Lahore High Court (LHC).

Earlier on May 18, PTA has issued instructions to all concerned to block the objectionable link/URL on facebook which were immediately blocked. PTA has established a Crisis Cell to monitor all such contents.

PTA’s helpline toll free number 0800-55055 and email can be used to notify all similar URLs where such objectionable material is placed.

Khurram A. Mehran

Director (PR)

List of banned sites


  • Civil Society Strategy Meeting: Saturday, May 22nd in Karachi. For details contact Jehan Ara, President at P@SHA
Date: 20th May 2010
Time: 5:00 pm (PST - Pakistan Std Time)
Venue: Karachi Press Club map it
Webcast Info: TBA -- Contact @DrAwab

Update: Based on the Tweets received thus far it appears like the Press Conference was a disaster.

OK! There is absolutely no possibility of rational dialogue on the Internet Censorship issue.

Everyone, please stay safe.#fbpkban -- From @Sabeen

There's is nothing that can be done on the Internet Censorship issue. Just be safe. 
And sorry. #fbpkban  -- From @kidvai

From the Press:

Press Conference at Karachi Press Club Ends on Sour Note
Newsline Report from Press Conference

Situation Update[]

(Real Time documentation of incidents as they arise)

FORMAT: When posting situation make sure to include the DATE, YOUR TWITTER ID.

  • Everybody - Problem at KHIi Press Club - gang of idiots outside threatening the Press Conf #FbPkban -- From @ayeshahalam @abidifactor
  • In addition to Facebook, as early Thursday (May 21st) morning YouTube, Wikipedia and Flickr have been banned by PTA in Pakistan.
  • Friday, May 21th, 2010, 12:43am (Pacific Time): It is believed Twitter has been banned from Pakistan.
I believe twitter is now banned in Pakistan and the blockage of sites has reached 1000. 
May be my last msg on twitter as ISPs implement ban (via @Jehan_Ara)
  • There are sketchy reports as to Twitter being banned. It's confirmed that Multinet had blocked Twitter, additionally Maxcom customers apparently were able to access Twitter well until mid-night on Friday.
  • It's apparent that Facebook has removed the Everyone Draw Mohammad Day page reports DAWN.COM
  • Saturday, May 22nd: It's clear that Twitter was never official blocked by PTA. However, Facebook and YouTube continue to be.
  • Tuesday, May 25th: Situation has gotten dangerous. Civil Society Members against Internet Censorship are being harassed and threatened

Community Outcry[]

  • Initial community outcry on Twitter #FBBanPk

Excerpts: Blogosphere Chatter[]

  • Islam isn't threatened by Facebook. You don't like the site, close your account. Maybe concentrate on unjust wars, occupation, drones? -- FatimaBhutto
  • What happens to young innovators who have been developing apps for Facebook or those who use YouTube to showcase their apps or prototypes. -- JenanAra
  • SHIT continues to hit the fan Wikipedia / Youtube / Facebook - is there anything else - lets unplug the Internet Backbone -- DrAwabAlvi
  • PTA seriously needs some educated, teach-aware people in their censorship board, who know how to block pages instead of whole freakng domain -- HamzaZafar
  • Crazies, censorship is censorship. Even if (it is) Facebook is wildly repellent, there's never any excuse to censor. -- FatimaBhotto
  • Bottom line --it's bad for business and investment in the country, here we are -- ex-pats / hyphenated Pakistanis working towards promoting a +ve image through our respective platforms -- OPEN, APPNA, etc -- and there the Goverment of Pakistan undermines it's diaspora's good work. -- ARRafiq
  • The REAL issue is not #FBpkban. It is the self-oppressive mindset of the larger population which rejoices in self-harm. Matter of concern -- RamlaAkhtar
  • What's wrong w/ D media? Why aren't they getting that Facebook ban is part of a larger issue that at the end of the day could effect them? -- ARRafiq
  • One bad guy in a village? Burn, the whole village down. Problem solved! --HushamAhmed
  • Pakistan just banned YouTube and Facebook: This is unfortunate, and bad for @Samasource workers there. -- Leila Chirayath Janah
  • What madness is this? How can this be countered? What purpose does this ban and censorship serve? Why can't we express and share our point of view rather than adopting this juvenile attitude of "I don't like your game so I am not playing?" I mean Freedom of Speech is a basic human right. How can we take it away in a Democratic country? -- Nadra Huma Ahmar
  • MillatFacebook was created by the lawyer behind the ban of Facebook -- ShamsHaider

Industry Position[]

Potentially thousands of Pakistani businesses and non-profits organizations, as well as individuals, who had Facebook Pages have been affected by the ban. Below is a sampling of those pages. You can add to this growing list, which is being cited as a resource across the Net. To add: List the page's name linked to its original FB address (Google to look it up), approximate number of members (fans), and briefly explain the nature of the page and its services. Share this page using this handy link:

Business Pages (Commercial pages. Includes services.)

  • uFone --99,416 members -- Wireless / Cellular Provider
  • RealityPod --69,868 members -- Technology, Robotics and Gadgets Portal
  • Mobilink -- 28,448 members -- Wireless / Cellular Service Provider
  • Zong -- 20,882 members -- Wireless/Cellular Provider
  • DAWN.COM -- 16,000 members -- provides news
  • Wi-Tribe 5,272 members -- Wireless Broadband Provider
  • ETail.Pk -- 3,821 members -- Online Store
  • Daaman -- 47,101 members -- Fashion label
  • iinix -- Systems services
  • Telenor Easy Paisa -- 24,000 members -- micro-payments and mobile banking service. Everyday citizen is direct beneficiary of this product and its page
  • WordPL (the voice of the small biz owner) - 112 members -- Helping Pakistanis Make an Online Living
  • PakInfo (Be Informed Always - Its all about Pakistan) - 183 members -- Total Pakistan based online news page. Get all the latest news related to different fields of Pakistan on your Profile.

NGOs/ Community-Based Organizations' Pages All non-profit, advocacy organizations)

  • Participatory Youth Development Network (PYDN)-Pakistan- 3,302 members Youth-Led nation-wide Youth Organization (
  • Pakistan Sustainability Network -- 1170 members -- Connecting people and organizations working for environment (renewable/ alternate energy, recycling, cleanliness drives, carbon footprint reduction, etc.)
  • SAYA Trust -- 801 members -- All fundraising activity for this school for the IDP's living in slums of Islamabad is conducted via a Facebook campaign.

Organizational/ Institutional Pages (Universities, governmental agencies, utilities, etc.)

  • LUMS -- 3,533 members --University
  • IBA -- 1,186 members - University
  • NED -- 3,823 member -- University
  • KESC-Official -- 5,000 members -- Karachi Electric Supply Corporation uses this page to stay in contact with consumers

Government Pages

Personal Pages (Including celebrities and everyday citizens)


Press Coverage[]




These links are focused on the Facebook ban. For a fuller list, please see main page on the Internet in Pakistan

Wiki Created May 20th, 2010 by AR Rafiq for the purpose of educating the public of a democratic society. Fostering democratic values at the grasroots -- one packetat a time.