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PTA blocks five dating apps “immoral content”

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Pakistan said on Tuesday it has blocked Tinder, Grindr and three other dating apps for not adhering to local laws, its latest move to curb online platforms deemed to be disseminating “immoral content”.

Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) has blocked access to five dating/live streaming applications including Tinder, Tagged, Skout, Grinder and SayHi, the authority announced on Twitter.

PTA

In view of negative effects of immoral/indecent content streaming through above applications, PTA issued notices to the management of above mentioned platforms for the purpose of removing dating services and moderate live streaming content in accordance with local laws of Pakistan, PTA said in a press release.

PTA

Pakistan, the second largest Muslim-majority country in the world after Indonesia, is an Islamic nation where extra-marital relationships and homosexuality are illegal. The Pakistan Telecommunications Authority said it has sent notices to the management of the five apps, “keeping in view the negative effects of immoral/indecent content streaming.”

PTA said the notices issued to Tinder, Grindr, Tagged, Skout and SayHi sought the removal of “dating services” and moderation of live streaming content in accordance with local laws. The companies did not respond to the notices within the stipulated time, the regulator added.

Tinder, Tagged, Skout and Grindr did not immediately respond to requests for comment. Reuters was unable to contact SayHi for comment.

PTA

PTA can, however, reconsider blocking of the said applications provided management of the companies assures adherence to the local laws with respect to moderating the indecent/immoral content through meaningful engagement.

Earlier, PTA issued a warning to Chinese-owned social media app TikTok to clamp down on what it called “immoral, obscene and vulgar” content on the video-sharing platform.

However, in September last year the Islamabad High Court (IHC) declared that the Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) is not empowered to block any website in violation of the due process and without hearing the viewpoint of the other party.

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