A North Idaho wireless internet provider says they will be making it easier for their customers to block Facebook and Twitter, after they said they've received "non-stop calls" from their customers asking them to do so.
KHQ spoke with YourT1Wifi owner Bret Fink who said the decision to do this was based only on logistics, not political ideology. Fink says many of his customers aren't tech savvy and he is simply trying to do his best to help as many customers as possible in as easy a way as possible. Fink says following Facebook and Twitter's decision to ban President Donald Trump from the sites, he heard from many customers saying the sites propagate misinformation and are wrongly censoring the President. He says many of his customers are concerned that the sites could negatively impact their children and their community. So he's taken steps to block them, which will go into effect Wednesday, January 13th.
Fink says an email that went out over the weekend was confusing to some people. And KHQ heard from some customers who felt that Fink was the one censoring information, by blocking them from receiving Facebook and Twitter. He says a clarifying email went out Monday morning, which you can read in full below:
As you know we sent out a email yesterday that was supposed to say if you want to be blocked from Twitter or Facebook please email, text or call us.
This is for the customers that have expressed they want it blocked to make it easier for us to do it for them, if you don’t want to be added to the block list then you don’t have to do anything as you wont be added to that list instead you will continue with no blocks just like always.
We believe that everyone deserves to make a choice and our customers that have called and emailed have expressed to be blocked (not All of them just a lot of them) so we sent out a email to everyone asking if they wanted to be blocked or unblocked. Guess we should have been more clear in the email if you don’t reply back or contact us you Will Still be able to connect to these sites.
We do not take any position other than we don’t condone what any of these companies are doing.
As a lot customers have stated. They do not want their children or their family connecting to these sites and do not have the know how to stop them from appearing so they asked us to do it for them. As IT guys Know its not easy programing a firewall for the people that don’t deal with it on a day to day basis and if they tried they can basically shut their internet off complete causing even more issues and websites they cannot go to. That is why we elected to do a Block list for those customers and send a email out asking who all wants to be added to it so we can get it done in a short time and be done with it.
This in no way is a total shut down from seeing these sites and if you read it as that, that is far from the truth, there is to many customers that use those sites for work and business and family just the ones asking will be blocked.