Baku, Azerbaijan, Sept. 8
By Umid Niayesh - Trend:
A survey by Iranian Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports indicates that 69.3 percent of the country's young generation use proxy servers to by-pass the filters and access banned Internet websites.
The survey was carried out in 2013 among 15,000 Iranians of the ages 15 to 29, the country's ISNA news agency reported Sept. 8. According to the results of the survey 67.4 percent of the sample population uses the Internet, and of that amount only 10.4 percent connect to Internet for educational purposes.
Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said on Sept. 7 that filtering the Internet is not the answer to the young generation's issues.
"When you set up filters, they create anti-filters (proxies)," Rouhani said while addressing a meeting with scholars and academics in eastern Mashhad city.
"This policy does not work," the president said, adding force does not produce results.
Iran has a policy of filtering online content, which leaves popular websites such as Facebook, Twitter and YouTube inaccessible without the use of illegal software.
Early in May, Rouhani said that "the days of despotism and one-way message delivery through loudspeakers and tribunes remained in the past."
He also welcomed Iranian's use of social networking sites, urging the Ministry of Communications to increase Internet speed and bandwidth for better public access.
The statements triggered attacks from Iranian conservatives and their media against the president, accusing him of not being aware of the threats in cyberspace.
Despite the bans over four million Iranians are using Facebook, according to the Minister of Culture, Ali Jannati who is himself a user of the website.