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23.9.14 1339
The W - Current Events & Politics - Q: Where's my YouTube gone? A: Pakistan blocked it
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dMr
Andouille








Since: 2.11.02
From: Edinburgh, Scotland

Since last post: 14 days
Last activity: 2 days
#1 Posted on | Instant Rating: 5.20
NB - Don't know if this belongs here or the Interwebs folder. Gone for here for the 'wider ramification' reason below, but happy to be corrected by the Powers That Be (natch)

Those of you wondering why you were unable to get your fix of skateboarding dogs, Mentos induced soda explosions and BOOBIES can apparently blame Pakistan's attempt to block the site nationally (information-age.com)

I'm interested in this not so much for the "Muslim nations censoring stuff" angle, but because of how stunningly simple it appears to have been to bring the site down.

Basically a Pakistan telecoms firm instructed their ISPs that they now ran the domain, and one ISP announced it globally (credit BBC for helping me put that in plain English).

The fact that it apears to have been done accidentally in this instance, if anything makes it more remarkable.

I'll be interested to see what comes from this in the long run, for I find it hard to believe it'll be the end of the matter. A site as big as YouTube being 'hijacked' like this is likely to raise much larger questions in the public arena about security/provision of websites.
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supersalvadoran
Landjager








Since: 10.1.08
From: westbury, new york

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#2 Posted on | Instant Rating: 2.69
    Originally posted by dMr
    I'm interested in this not so much for the "Muslim nations censoring stuff" angle, but because of how stunningly simple it appears to have been to bring the site down.


Somehow, given the political situation in Pakistan, I don't think this is just "Muslims are offended and want the site shut down". I say it might have more to do with Musharraf wanting to shut down a opition by opponents to critize him and his government. This might be the start of something for him to do to stay strong in power where he might say having the site up would 'endanger the security of Pakistan' to justify it being down. Next thing, all of a sudden, other forms of information such as newspapers, radio, and TV may be controlled by him in a 'state of emergency' so that he can make sure that he can stay in power while others such as Bhutto's party have no way to gain power of thweir own.
dMr
Andouille








Since: 2.11.02
From: Edinburgh, Scotland

Since last post: 14 days
Last activity: 2 days
#3 Posted on | Instant Rating: 5.20
    Originally posted by supersalvadoran
    Somehow, given the political situation in Pakistan, I don't think this is just "Muslims are offended and want the site shut down". I say it might have more to do with Musharraf wanting to shut down a opition by opponents to critize him and his government.


To clarify, I was just dismissing what much of the mainstream (non-techy) media seemed to be reporting as the news aspect of the story (religious censorship) cos I reckon the internet security issue is the 'new' thing to come out of it.

Your point is well made though and to be honest, one I hadn't considered.

For what it's worth Pakistan has now lifted the ban saying that the offensive content (which they intimate was the recently republished Danish cartoons) has been removed.

On the security front, YouTube say they're reviewing things to find a way of making sure it won't happen again. If anyone's of an equally geeky nature as myself (you have my sympathy) and wants to know more about how the blackout happened, along with discussion on possible ramifications/fixes, this (asert.arbornetworks.com) covers things pretty well.

I hope I'm wrong (I like to think I'm not generally alarmist), but it really highlights the fragility of the 'net and I'd be mildly surprised if such a high profile case doesn't lead to more deliberate or malicious attempts to block sites in the future.

(edited by dMr on 27.2.08 1216)
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