While the military is actively using YouTube to promote its view of the war (U.S. Military’s “Multi-National Force” on YouTube) it is simultaneously banning troops from using YouTube claiming a problem with bandwidth.
- Controlling the bandwidth of war, By Patrick Jackson, BBC News, 2007/05/15
Thirteen sites have been declared off-limits on Department of Defense computer systems, ranging from MySpace to MTV.
The official reason given is that too much military bandwidth is being hogged to share photos, video clips and messages.
Ironically, the US military itself has just launched its own channel on YouTube, uploading clips of fire fights and troops helping civilians in Iraq.
“The US Army’s not going to pay the bill for you to get on MySpace and YouTube,” was how Maj Bruce Mumford, a communications officer serving in Iraq, explained the curbs to the Associated Press.
The BBC site has comments from military families and their heartbreaking stories of how this ban affects their ability to communicate. Mumford’s comment that the Army won’t “pay the bill” for soldiers sounds cruel in the context of the money going to pay the bill for propaganda.
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