Pakistan ends YouTube ban after custom version launches

The country now has a direct line to Google to voice content complaints.

YouTube is now officially back in Pakistan, following the launch of a localized version of the site last week, Reuters reports. The Pakistan Telecommunication Authority banned YouTube back in 2012 after an offensive anti-Islam film, Innocence of Muslims, was posted. Now with the localized version, the PTA has a more direct line of access to Google to deal with offensive content.

In its announcement this morning, the PTA noted, "Google has provided an online web process through which requests for blocking access of the offending material can be made by PTA to Google directly and Google/YouTube will accordingly restrict access to the said offending material for users within Pakistan."

Just like the new localized YouTube sites in Nepal and Sri Lanka, Pakistan's site will also highlight media from local artists. While it's a shame Pakistan's citizens won't have access to everything YouTube offers, a slightly slimmed down version is probably better than nothing. Don't be surprised if Google repeats this strategy in other countries -- it might just be the way way the company brings YouTube back to China.

[Photo credit: Arif Ali/AFP/Getty Images]