The Turkish Youtube music giant Netd declined to upload the video for a politically-charged song by the popular band Grup Gündoğarken to its account, according to a report in the daily Sözcü.
The song “Nereden Nereye” (From Where to Where) features a number of iconic Turkish actors and politicians from the past, and explores the country’s recent history in its lyrics.
“From where to where have we gone, from where to where are we going?” asks the song in its lyrics. Netd is the biggest Youtube channel for Turkish-language music, and Grup Gündoğarken’s members have criticized the decision, calling it a case of censosrship.
“In the song we explain from where to where we have gone. We tried to make a video that would make people smile. All of us are worn out from polarization. In the video there are people like [former Prime Ministers] Necmettin Erbakan and Tansu Çiller. It was a fun video. There are no insults, no images related to the [current] government. We showed in its entirety [the country’s] situation from the 1980’s up until the present,” said Grup Gündoğarken’s founder Burhan Şeşen.
“What saddens me the most is the use of censorship. They are thinking ‘what if they say something’? In that case how will things get produced? All that is left is this channel on social media, it’s not being shown on any tv channel. If this happens to us, how will those who want to create alternative or opposition-oriented work be able to have their voices heard,” Şeşen added.
Following the company’s decision, Grup Gündoğarken decided to share the video on its own social media channels.
Netd’s social media and digital marketing director Yıldız Ertan said that the company did not publish the video because it needs to obtain legal letters of consent from those who are featured in it or risk facing legal trouble.