Taliban Shuts Down LGBTQ-Oriented Mastodon Instance in Afghanistan

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Taliban Shuts Down LGBTQ-Oriented Mastodon Instance in Afghanistan

The Taliban, currently in control of Afghanistan, recently shut down the LGBTQ-oriented "queer.af" Mastodon instance, administered by the Afghan government. The instance's administrator, Erin Shepherd, had intended to close the platform in April, but it was unexpectedly terminated. The Afghanistan Ministry of Communications and IT sent an email to Shepherd, informing her of the suspension of the queer.af domain and the impending cessation of all associated websites and emails. Additionally, it was noted that all .af domains acquired through the "Gandi" domain registrar had been shut down. The report highlighted the potential consequences of utilizing country code top-level domains (ccTLDs) outside their designated countries, citing both financial benefits and negative implications. It also recommended opting for generic TLDs like ".com" or ".net" as a safer choice. The Taliban's control over Afghanistan has led to numerous controversial decisions, including the closure of universities and high schools to female students, suspending employment of women in international and domestic NGOs, and public punishment of individuals for various offenses. Additionally, a Taliban leader publicly expressed support for Twitter over Meta's content policy.