62 thoughts on “Israeli ISP Bans Access to Tikun Olam – Tikun Olam תיקון עולם إصلاح العالم
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  1. You’re saying a privately owned Christian ISP somewhere catering to the god-fearing people of west bubblef-ck couldn’t do the same? Why is it so undemocratic? The only people who sign up with ISP’s like that are people who WANT this kind of censorship. It’s like signing up for a cybernanny service…

    If this was netvision, bezeq intl, kavei zahav and so on, this would be a story.

    1. I don’t believe there are privately owned Christian fundamentalist ISPs. But I invite you to research that & let me know. As far as I know, ISPs are considered public utilities here & such censorship wouldn’t be allowed under FCC rules. But I’m not an expert in this. That doesn’t mean that parents can’t set their own Google configuration to filter out objectionable internet material. But that’s different than what Etrog is doing.

      1. There are. Check out Crossway Christian ISP services or True Vine Online. There are some others out there as well.

        1. Wow! Crossway doesn’t support the “feminist demonic triangle!” Am I to be left to imagine what this might denote? Apparently, “family values” are inconsistent with that triangle.

          1. There are so many things Crossways doesn’t support that I could not find a triangle as a representative image of all the bad things. Maybe I read it wrong.

  2. What do you think will happen when your one-state-solution is put into action?

    The frum and your allies, the fascist Mohammedan, will GOVERNMENTALLY prohibit sites that they don’t like. Be careful what you wish for.

      1. Not so! “Mohammedans” WAS the commonly accepted term for Muslims two generations ago. It was not neccessarily used as a derogatory. Most who used it weren’t prejudiced;
        they used it simply because that was the only name that they were familiar with.

        1. You’re bullshitting too. Don’t pretend you know something or make things up. There are people here who far more than you on these subjects. So your bluffing is transparent miles away.

          From Wikipedia:

          “Mohammedan (also spelled Muhammadan, Mahommedan, Mahomedan or Mahometan) is an archaic Western term for a follower of the Islamic prophet Muhammad.[1] … The terms Muslim and Islamic are more common today.

          1. Mr. Silverstein; Your caustic and insulting remarks were completely uncalled for. You have never walked a yard in my shoes, so you have absolutely no right to tell me WHAT I have experienced in my 70 years on this earth. I had never even met a Muslim until I was in my 40 years and for the entirety of those years and some time afterward, I do not recall anyone referring to followers of Islam anything other that Mohammedans.

            You have just lost one of your biggest fans and intellectual supporters. You have lost all sense of proportion and are NOW more of a detriment to a civil solution to this conflict
            than a contributor. You definitely have an EGO problem.

            What I honestly don’t understand is you posted an article by Wikipedia that basically says exactly what I said. at the same time you accuse me of making things up, bullshitting.

          2. Oh please. From your first comment here only a week ago or so you couldn’t be characterized even remotely as a fan or supporter of mine. Besides I’ve never heard of a fan or supporter of mine who called Muslims Mohammedans. No fan or supporter of mind has ever called “Mohammedans” “fascists” as you have. Your claim is preposterous.

            The Wikipedia article said that anyone using the term you used is using an archaic term, one no longer used. Instead of getting in a huff, you might want to think about whether you should update your vocabulary to reflect terms that have replaced the archaic ones you’re still using, which are now considered insulting & condescending towards Muslims.

          3. Frankly, I don’t think you’ve lost anything with David Terry. Any “intellectual” supporter would know better than use the term “Mohammedans” at this juncture in history unless he was trying to make some point in the choice. Auf Weidersehen, Herr Terry!

        2. I do dimly recall the use of the term way back in time, but not it is not in current usage and, therefore, its use raises concern that it is intended to be disparaging in some way. It seems to me that any intellectual involved with the issues at hand would know this and not, instead, defend the usage. Certainly, anyone of your maturity would know that as well. I do know you did not use the term in the first place. Characterizing me as Silverstein’s “bulldog” is a sort of dim praise. Thanks.

          1. How old are you David, twelve? Perhaps in your lifetime you heard the term used disparagingly, or maybe not. The point is that the term “Mohammedan” was used by many people who were simply unaware of the more current (or politically correct) term. That does not mean that they used is in that sense.

            Further, If you go back and read the string of comments you will see that it WASN’T me that used the term. I was
            merely responding to some other person named Deïr Yassin
            who was claiming that only fascists used the term. THAT,
            as stated above simply wasn’t true.

            Your comment about being called Tincup’s “bulldog” as dim praise, says a lot more about you sense of self-esteem than anything else I could add.

          2. First of all, I did not assault you personally so your comments about me personally are out of place.

            Second, the term was used at one time certainly but people who purport to be knowledgeable on these matters (big supporters of this blog, for example, like yourself) would not use the term unless doing so had some sort of purpose (what that could be, I can’t guess). These thoughts are coherent: You can’t be both knowledgeable and use the term to describe this group. So which is it?

            And, yes, I do much admire Silverstein in promoting this discussion, and others with far more relevance to the ME. I need hardly apologize for this.

            Lastly, I do know that you did not use the term to identify the group but simply sought to clarify its use. I said so above.

          3. I do apologize: I mean these observations for the original writer using the term. Was that your point, Mr. Terry? I thought that was understood.

            Let’s forget this whole stupid thing.

          4. @ David Terry – though this is a little late.
            I know that two generations ago people said “Muhammedans”. Two generation ago people also said “Negro” or even worse…
            We are in 2012, and “Mohammedans” is deeply insulting to a Muslim, and the people using it on the net know that.
            It’s deeply insulting because Islam does not put the Prophet in the place of God.

          5. @ David Terry
            Sorry, I forgot this: you should read the comments ‘in context’.
            I responded to someone who talked about “fascist Mohammedans” and I answered that only real fascists would actually call Muslims for Muhammedans, so I didn’t take the “fascist” out of nowhere.

          6. I don’t understand why there seems to never be a “reply” icon on those comments that I wish to respond to.

            This is a “reply” to Deïr Yassin
            who wrote on April 25, 2012 at 3:45 AM
            “Two generation ago people also said “Negro” or even worse…”

            People STILL use the word “Negro” and it is not considered an insult, although a derivitive of it IS! Caucasoid, Negroid
            and Mongoloid are still used within forensic anthropology (when analyzing skeletal remains), biomedical research, and race-based medicine.
            In addition, law enforcement utilizes race in profiling suspects and to reconstruct the faces of unidentified remains

            >>We are in 2012, and “Mohammedans” is deeply insulting >to a Muslim, and the people using it on the net know that.

            I do not KNOW every person who uses “the net”, but I still find your out-of-context statement presumptuous. Why don’t you do a google search and find out for yourself.

            > It’s deeply insulting because Islam does not put the > Prophet in the place of God.

            Those folks who are generally referred to, and also refer
            to themselves as Mormons, don’t place THEIR prophet in the place of G-d.

            I might add, why do you say “the” Prophet and why do you capitalize Prophet? Clearly, you place Mohammed above all other men. What is the difference?

          7. @ David Terry
            “People still use the word “Negro” and it’s not considered an insult”
            Come on ! I’m not a Native English-speaker and still I know very well that of course “Negro” is an insult. No Black, whether African, African-Caribbean or African-American would consider “Negro” a neutral term. Either you live on another planet or you’re a troll.

            If you look at the statement by “Laugh-I-Don’t Know-What” who used ‘Mohammedans’ combined with fascists, you’ll see that he used the label to dismiss Richard’s point of view, and of course he knew “Mohammedans” is insulting.

            I didn’t write anything about the Mormons, I don’t know anything about the Mormons, and with all my respect but I don’t care about the Mormons – at least not in this comment – so how they call themselves and what they consider sacred is not the topic nor my business.
            As a Muslim I say that “Mohammedans” is an insult and incorrect, just as it would be calling Christians “Jesuites”. And yes, I know what Jesuites are… and I’m not going to waste time on a debate on religion. If you’re interested in Islam, I’m sure there’s a public library around where you live.

          8. David: Deir Yassin is Muslim I believe, and it’s extremely touchy to tell someone how they should feel about terms used to portray their religion.

            Very very few people use the term Negro any more as it’s been replaced in common usage by other terms.

  3. Uhm, just for the record, the default settings of T-Mobile blocks access to your site as well in the US. I was using a T-Mobile SIM card in my iPhone and could not access your site. What the policies of Etrog, a privately owned ISP servicing a Haredi population, have to do with the state of Israeli Democracy is anyone’s guess. I bet they block Isreality too.

    1. Frankly, I don’t believe that T Mobile blocks access to my site & I have no idea what “default settings” means. But I’m not surprised that you’d justify this sort of internet censorship.

        1. Webguard appears to be volitional, a matter of choice. Out of the box, the restricted access categories are

          Mature Content




          Which one fits Richard’s blog, I wonder? Could it be maybe “Gambling”? Or “Alcohol?

          Good to know that T-Mobile takes it upon itself to restrict sites without consent.

          1. With all the discussions on military matter or Iran, weapons and ammunition were mentioned here. Richard also looks quite mature, silver hair and all. Hard to tell what the filter allows “out of the box”. Perhaps only the website of the provider with instructions how to unblock some categories.

      1. Since I have not been afforded the right to “reply” to the other David (the one without discernment) I am responding on THIS string instead. For David’s information, I AM NOT THE PERSON who used the term Mohammedan. I was replying to the statement of someone calling himself Deïr Yassin, who used the term.

        Mr. Silverstein writes above: ” But I’m not surprised that you’d justify this sort of internet censorship.” All the while he censors my comment to his faithfull bulldog, David.

        1. David: I owe you an apology. Another reader than you used the term “Mohammedan fascist” which made me bristle for obvious reasons. That was not you. But since you defended the use of the term “Mohammedan” I mistakenly presumed you & the earlier commenter were one and the same. I am very sorry that I made this mistake. I remain critical of the use of “Mohammedan” in any modern context, but my equating you with the other commenter was sloppy on my part. I hope you’ll accept my apology.

          My only excuse is that there have been 70,000 comments published here over nearly ten years & on any given day I may reply to 5-10 different commenters. In a few instances I get mixed up & make assumptions I shouldn’t, which is what happened here.

          1. Thank you, Richard.

            I’m cool with that.
            Now, back to making the world a better place

            Shalom, As Salaam Alaikum, Paz

  4. I am a T-Mobile customer and am using T-Mobile to reply. Tikun is not blocked. Also, T-Mobile does not distribute or support the iPhone, so the install being discussed is not standard. Based on the Webguard FAQ, it would seem that such blocking, if it exists, is accidental.

      1. Webguard does. I think the above customer has a different plan. On some plans the default is for Webguard to be active, for others it is optional and the default setting is inactive. There is a way you can email Webguard (from the T Mobile link) and see if you can get off the 18+ list. Just curious, though, do you think this site is appropriate for all ages? There is some salty language from time to time. And a few salacious items as you’ve noted above.

        1. Never mind “salacious” and “salty” have the same meaning here. it is not up to Richard or you to dictate what is meaningful and appropriate for “all ages”. Mature people can decide for themselves and younger people can be constrained, however ineffectually, by their guardians.

        2. I think this site is appropriate for all adults and for mature adolescents. I have 7 yr old twins and I don’t conceal what I do or write or display on my blog from them (though I do conceal the death threats and threats of rape that commenters attempt to post here from them). I hardly find it likely that a 12 yr old is going to read my blog unless they’re very interested in this subject. I would rather a parent make this decision than an indiscriminate web filter program.

  5. Well, Richard, you must be doing something right if “they” want to shut you down. Keep up the good work!

  6. Just to be clear, I have an iPhone 4s from Israel. Here the iPhone 4s is sold unlocked thus I can put in any SIM card that I like and it will work. In the US the only carrier that will sell you a SIM card with a plan (not just pay as you go with a cheapo phone) is T-Mobile. Thus for $60 I got a plan that allows me unlimited US calls, unlimited texting and 5 gigs of high speed 4G internet access. Once the 5 gigs are used, my Internet access goes to the slower normal network. 4G gives me 7.5 MBPS speed and the normal slower network is 2.5 MBPS. This is a much better deal than any Pay as you go and I can keep using my iPhone with its contacts and apps.

    As Bob Mann correctly noted, Tikun Olam is blocked by default by Webguard on T-Mobile. I can access Tikun Olam in Israel on my iPhone without problems (I use Orange) but in the US I would have to log into my Webguard account and expressly unblock it. When I purchased the SIM card, no one told me anything about Webguard or how to access it to change the settings. In my time in the US the only site that I frequent that was blocked this way was Tikun Olam. I’ll be in the US next week, maybe I’ll email you a screen cap.

    That being said, in both cases, T-Mobile and Etrog, neither blockage was done by the government. Again, I have no idea how this post says anything about the state of Israeli democracy.

    1. “the only site that I frequent that was blocked this way was Tikun Olam”

      have you tried other Israeli sites? And how’s about Mondoweiss?

      1. I’ll check again next week when I am back in the US, but I visit Mondoweiss, +972, Isreality, Jewlicious etc. and all the news sites and none of those were blocked by Webguard. Just Tikun Olam. Weird, right?

        1. In your entire discussion of this you never once expressed any concern or opposition toward T Mobile or Webguard blocking my site. It’s your product, not mine. If I had such a product censoring entirely legitimate websites I’d be pissed off and say so to my cell provider.

          But I guess censorship of those with whom you disagree doesn’t bother you that much.

        2. Huh? I am categorically opposed to censorship of any kind! It doesn’t matter whether I agree with the underlying content or not. Besides, this doesn’t qualify as censorship in the free speech, constitutional sense at all. I can go to my WebGuard settings and unblock whatever I like and this service isn’t government imposed, imperfect as it is, it’s there because I guess customers demand it. I save my indignation for things that matter, not for self aggrandizement or to score cheap points.

          1. I’ve checked the list of all sites blocked by Webguard and this site isn’t on it. So the onus is on you to prove that I am. I’m curious whether you can. It would make for a good story if I am so it would be interesting if you’re right. But you’ll have to provide more proof than you have.

            BTW, when a public utility bans or censors a website that’s called censorship whether you accept or recognize the term or not.

          2. It doesn’t disturb you that T-Mobile reduces your free choice to the fine print, in effect, that you have some choice if you seek it out, otherwise not? This doesn’t raise some “indignation?”

          3. Well, when I try to access a site that is blocked, I get a message on my screen telling me so. And that message also tells me how to unblock it. I assume that once I go into said settings I can unblock everything. So T-mobile is very upfront about what’s going on. I am one login away from completely unfettered surfing so, no, I don’t think that merits indignation. I know these systems are imperfect and false positives happen all the time – which nis what I assumed happened when this site was blocked.

          4. Note she clearly never even reported my site was filtered to T Mobile despite the fact that I offered readers an opportunity to do so. No, she’s cool with censorship if it filters sites like mine.

          5. Well, Pea, I’d be indignant that some corporation decided what should be immediately available and what not. At the very least, you must be annoyed about that. I think you are evading the main point: Why was this site blocked in the first place?

  7. This post seems childish, thinking the (haredic) world revolves around you. Most ISRAELI web sites are blocked, including most news portals, and it takes much less than pornography to get blacklisted. Allowing for communities to filter their own access to the internet is an integral part of Israeli democracy.

    1. You’re either an outright liar or just plain ignorant. Why do you bother to peddle such inanity here? My comment rules insist on accurate claims, not ones you make up out of whole cloth.

      The main Israeli ISPs do not censor web searches themselves though probably allow individual users to configure searches for filtering just as Google does.

      Don’t bullshit here. It’s not appreciated.

    2. I am not going to call Daniel a liar OR ignorant. However,
      he has be mislead or is accepting contradictory principles that do not fit in a democracy. I would argue (on one hand)that if a privately owned ips chooses to not allow a specific website to be accessed on it’s service, it has every LEGAL
      right to do so. I personally would not tolerate it and would take my business elsewhere and encourage others to do likewise.

      ON THE OTHER HAND, A “community” has no right to censor what individual members choose to access or receive in the way of internet information. When the government gets into the act it becomes CENSORSHIP in the fascist sense of that word. Personal “censorship” as in one’s own home or property, may be illadvise or even immoral, but no ones personal or civil liberties have been violated.

      live free
      Dave Terry

      1. It seems to me that the public has an interest in internet providing services, like it has in water and power utilities and that the right of the isp to filter its utility may be very conditional if it exists at all. This is just one reflection of the whole problem with “privitazation” especially applied to war and armies, and prisons, and schools: The public interest in these “services” is way too high to allow unfettered private ownership and yet the US has a high level of this kind of thing. Private contractors are fighting wars, running prisons for profit and so on. It doesn’t necessarily — but it invariably does — violate the social contract in favor of one group or another. Can you imagine the power company not delivering to latinos or blacks? Yet, in Israel, water is withheld as a punishment of Palestinians.

  8. Richard Silverstein says:

    David: Deir Yassin is Muslim I believe, and it’s extremely touchy to tell someone how they should feel about terms used to portray their religion.

    I understand, that is why I’m not going to respond to his rant, even though it stereotypically represents almost every
    negative aspect by which many Americans judge Muslims.

    He is arrogant, yet thin skinned with a chip on his shoulder, just looking for some excuse to explode. He admits he isn’t
    a “native-English speaker”, but has the nerve to lecture one who has spoken the tongue for almost 70 years, on what terms are proper.

    There are putzes in every group, he seems to be our Muslim example.

    You wrote: “Very very few people use the term Negro any more as it’s been replaced in common usage by other terms.

    generally speaking that is true, but even it those cases where it is still used it is NOT necessarily derogatory or demeaning. Consider the “United Negro College Fund”, run BY African Americans to afford young black students the opportunity to attend college.

    Don’t we have enough obscene words that we don’t have to manufacture MORE?

    Dave Terry
    Dave Terry

    1. That is inexcusable, David. Deir Yassin doesn’t have to justify or explain herself to you as a person or a Muslim. And I resent your using the term “rant” in describing her comments. As far as I’m concerned if you were Christian & told me I shouldn’t have a problem being called a Judean or Hebrew, I’d tell you to take a hike. It’s my right to define how I should be called, not yours. Nor is Deir Yassin a “he.” Rather than her having thin-skin I think you have tin ears as you’re not listening carefully to what Muslims (& non-Muslims) here are telling.

      I’ve been reading her comments here for years & have never found her English wanting. Talking about obscenity, you’re used a Yiddish obscenity which I find disgusting. I’m afraid using the term “putz” is a moderating offense here. Read the comment rules. If you want to use disgusting names of sexual organs you’ll have to do it elsewhere.

      As for the term “Negro” it isn’t true “generally speaking” that the term isn’t used. It’s absolutely true. The United Negro College Fund & NAACP names revert back 50 yrs & haven’t been updated because the original names resonate with old fogeys like you (& perhaps me). But other than that, you won’t find the word used except in an ironic context as I did when Criticizing Jesse Jackson Jr.

      1. Richard, I can’t believe that you are so closed-minded that you are unable to discern who attacked who. First of all, let me preface this by saying that (if you will read my last post again – I thought Deir Yassin was a GUY!) ALSO, I did
        not make any personal comments about her until after she
        said: ” Either you live on another planet or you’re a troll.”

        Further, your reaction to my use of a Yiddish word that is NOW part of the English lexicon expresses a provincialism
        that surprises me. The word that I used also means: nerd, fool, moron or a person who is unlearned and unpleasant.

        The word in German (of which Yiddish is partly derived) is
        used for the mythological “PUCK”. The word is so “obscene”
        that thousand of Germans have it a surname, i.e.
        Erny Putz (1917–?), Luxembourg fencer
        Hans Putz (1920–90), Austrian actor
        J. J. Putz (b.1977), baseball relief pitcher
        Jean Pütz (b.1936), German science journalist

        We have REAL enemies out there. It is Stupid to waste our time insulting each other. For the record Richard, you tend to call anyone who disagrees with you a liar. That is NOT helpful to helping to build a better world.

        Dave Terry

        1. Any Yiddish speaker or one who is familiar with Yiddish knows this:

          Earlier in slang sense of “penis” (in “Tropic of Cancer”);

          It’s a nasty term that I abhor.

          I only call people liars who are. And I always point out specifically why they are. So you are wrong in your claim & I find it offensive because it is untrue.

          1. Richard — I have noted your tendency to use “liar” seemingly automatically rather than “misinformed”, the more polite assumption. When you do this, you either know something about the other or it is just a rude assumption and I (and maybe other newbies) don’t know which. You might explain in each case.

            As for the discussion about the slang term, it ain’t worth continuing, like the “negro” discussion: All points have been made.

          2. If I know someone is stating something false but don’t know whether they know it to be false, I usually state that they’re either ignorant or a liar. If someone states something false that I believe they know is false, then I’ll call them a liar. Also, I use this term because there is so much nonsense spewed by rightists that I want those who spout it to know in no uncertain terms that they’re spewing garbage & will be called out for it. I don’t think “misinformed” does this noxious phenomenon justice. It’s just too polite.

    2. This is simply incredible ! Someone here mentions “fascist Mohammedans” and I intervene to say that only fascists would use “Mohammedans” and off we go with people who lecture on how “Mohammedans” isn’t negative.
      Maybe David Terry never left his native America, but my world is not turning around the American navel, and my comment on Mohammedans vs Muslim has nothing to do with how “Americans judge Muslims”. It’s a general statement.
      You can be a perfect Islamophobe all while calling Muslims Muslims. I’m simply stating that the term is incorrect, negatively loaded and deeply resented by Muslims.
      “Mohammedans” indicate a cult of Muhammad. ‘Muslim’ comes fron the root s/l/m – the same as ‘salâm’ [peace] – and means ‘the one who submits to Islam’ to put it comprehensively.
      I just talked with a friend from Trinidad living in the UK on the phone. I asked her about “Negro”. Well, I’ll keep to myself what she said about some White people still having difficulties with Blacks not working in the cotton fields any longer…..:-D

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