The main regulatory problems that Research In Motion has been encountering lately has been providing means for lawful interception to governments, and though Indonesia has those issues about security, they also have a different problem: access to adult content online. Indonesia has banned internet pornography since 2008, and that access should extend to wireless internet access on BlackBerry as well, argues Communication and Information Minister Tifatul Sembiring: “RIM may violate our law if it remains providing porn content in its service. … If they are still not responding to our request, we have to close it down.” Indonesia’s not alone in trying to get RIM to ban mobile porn – Kuwait was trying to do the same thing, and claimed to be making progress.
The problem with this kind of demand is that, firstly, the problem is one the Indonesian government should be taking up with wireless service providers, not RIM. Secondly, I’m worried that world governments will start jumping opportunistically on this Saudi Arabia / India / U.A.E. mess to apply pressure to RIM to meet their particular demands. RIM has said with some confidence that they approach and meet all regulations with the same standards, and don’t do anyone any favours. However, if the demands can be sufficiently deflected to carriers, I imagine that the government’s concerns can be addressed with no interruption in BlackBerry service.