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Censorship United Kingdom

RadioTimes.com Accidentally Included In UK Antipiracy Blocking 43

Techmeology writes "Legitimate TV schedule website RadioTimes.com was briefly blocked by ISPs Be Broadband and Virgin Media as a result of the site's shared IP address. This comes days after it was discovered that Sky's system is vulnerable to DNS attacks that lead to TorrentFreak being blocked accidentally."
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RadioTimes.com Accidentally Included In UK Antipiracy Blocking

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  • Evilgasm! (Score:4, Interesting)

    by girlintraining ( 1395911 ) on Wednesday August 14, 2013 @11:13AM (#44565557)

    Ambition: These network admins need some. I'm still waiting for one of these sites to update their DNS to include every IP address on the internet with an 'A' record in their domain, then create a web page for their crawler that sequentially lists them all. The entire UK wakes up tomorrow with no internet.

    Great Britain could use a Great kick in the ass. The irony of trying to block porn and winding up booting themselves off the entire internet cannot be understated.

    • Re:Evilgasm! (Score:4, Interesting)

      by Gaygirlie ( 1657131 ) <gaygirlie.hotmail@com> on Wednesday August 14, 2013 @11:33AM (#44565813) Homepage

      Ambition: These network admins need some. I'm still waiting for one of these sites to update their DNS to include every IP address on the internet with an 'A' record in their domain, then create a web page for their crawler that sequentially lists them all. The entire UK wakes up tomorrow with no internet.

      That's exactly the same thought I've had rumbling around in my head for a while now, though if I were running one of these blocked sites I'd probably include all the government sites and such there, but leave all the questionable content - offering sites out of there just to mess with people even more. On that note I'm fully expecting someone to blanket a whole range of IP-addresses like this and watching Cameron burn. Too bad that I don't like popcorn.

      • by tlhIngan ( 30335 )

        That's exactly the same thought I've had rumbling around in my head for a while now, though if I were running one of these blocked sites I'd probably include all the government sites and such there, but leave all the questionable content - offering sites out of there just to mess with people even more. On that note I'm fully expecting someone to blanket a whole range of IP-addresses like this and watching Cameron burn. Too bad that I don't like popcorn.

        Not just government sites, add in Google, Facebook, Gma

    • Re:Evilgasm! (Score:4, Interesting)

      by Zocalo ( 252965 ) on Wednesday August 14, 2013 @12:03PM (#44566133) Homepage
      Yup, one of the first things that crossed my mind too. I'm surprised it hasn't happened already, to be honest, given the dubious nature of many of the sites concerned, but it's probably just a matter of time. All they would need to do is randomly insert a few IP addresses of high profile sites into a list of A records for the blocked site, and bonus points for using dynamic updates to change the trojan IPs randomly making it harder to establish what happened. It'll cause a percentage of people who are not blocked and trying to visit the site to get default websites or error pages depending on how many duff A records there are in proportion to legit ones, but that's nothing compared to the PR pain of those trying to run the filters or operators of the collateral damage. I suspect the list of targets would be pretty broad, but good look if you are responsible for running websites for one of the following when someone actually gets around to it:
      • Political bodies associated with censorship, especially the Conservatives & Lib Dems
      • Specific politicians associated with censorship, such as Claire Perry
      • Mainstream media, especially those promoting such ridiculous schemes such as the Daily Mail
      • ISPs that have rolled over implemented the scheme (How many took it to the High Court again? It was ZERO, wasn't it?)
    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward

      You don't need to be so bold. Just put the BBC, Sky News, and a few other conventional media sites on there. Maybe add the official Parliamentary web site. After all, there must be something some people would regard as "porn" [bbc.co.uk] somewhere on those sites.

      Doing a blanket block is too obvious. Make it selective. As selective as you like. As if being "selective" would solve the problem. Then maybe people will get the point that being selective *IS* the problem.

      [lawl - the captcha is "hubris"]

  • by tlambert ( 566799 ) on Wednesday August 14, 2013 @11:19AM (#44565631)

    I wonder... colud this be abused to cause the blocvking site to block the blocking site?

    You know, the way all the "net nanny" sites fail to include themselves when the "intolerance" or "censorship" checkbox is checked?

  • by bmo ( 77928 ) on Wednesday August 14, 2013 @11:25AM (#44565707)

    There are those in broadcasting that still view the Internet as "the enemy" and that even program listings somehow deserve "copyright" - even after 31 years of TCP/IP Internet.

    --
    BMO

    (I deliberately didn't include pre-tcp/ip Arpanet/Tymnet, etc.)

    • by Dogtanian ( 588974 ) on Wednesday August 14, 2013 @01:51PM (#44567281) Homepage

      There are those in broadcasting that still view the Internet as "the enemy" and that even program listings somehow deserve "copyright" - even after 31 years of TCP/IP Internet.

      Ironically, up until the early 1990s, the Radio Times itself had a monopoly on BBC TV- and radio!- listings beyond the "same day" ones newspapers were allowed to carry. (There was also another publication called TV Times that had a similar monopoly the remaining two TV stations (ITV, and later Channel 4). This meant that you'd have to buy *two* magazines if you wanted complete programme information more than a day in advance).

    • The "internet" is not the enemy. We are. The internet just happens to be a tool we use a lot, therefore it must be controlled, so that we may also be controlled.

    • Radio Times are one of the official distributors of TV listings. They have been around since the 1920s.

  • Be & Sky (Score:5, Informative)

    by Warbothong ( 905464 ) on Wednesday August 14, 2013 @11:34AM (#44565829) Homepage

    This kind of nonsense is exactly why I left Be when they were bought by Sky.

    I'm now with Andrews & Arnold, who's registration process forces me to opt-out of any censorship http://aa.net.uk/kb-broadband-unfiltered.html [aa.net.uk]

  • by Anonymous Coward

    Expect foreign news sites to accidentally get included, especially those critical of the UK's extreme right wing and immigration "fuck off' vans.

  • http://www.theguardian.com/technology/2012/nov/13/children-porn-starbucks [theguardian.com] "Filtering doesn't work. It also puts power into censorware firms which help cover up human rights abuse"
    • That's a good one, thanks.

      I really liked the comment here: discussion.theguardian.com/comment-permalink/19421618

  • I have an idea (Score:4, Interesting)

    by slashmydots ( 2189826 ) on Wednesday August 14, 2013 @12:13PM (#44566241)
    The only way they'll learn that this system is overzealous, non-working crap is their pocketbooks. Time to sue the hell out of them for downtime losses.
    • Re:I have an idea (Score:4, Interesting)

      by fahrbot-bot ( 874524 ) on Wednesday August 14, 2013 @01:10PM (#44566861)

      The only way they'll learn that this system is overzealous, non-working crap is their pocketbooks. Time to sue the hell out of them for downtime losses.

      Or sue the ISP for over charging customers for Internet access. Customers are paying for access to the Internet, yet their ISP is only granting access to part of the Internet. I think customers are due a refund...

      • by Anonymous Coward

        Ofcom (UK regulator) quote:

        Terms used by ISPs to describe their services should also be clear. In particular, a consumer paying for ‘internet access’ should expect this to include the full range of services available over the open internet. ISPs should not use the term ‘internet access’ to refer to a service that blocks lawfully available internet services.

        Source [ofcom.org.uk].

  • by Anonymous Coward

    Now that the rich and powerful of the world have conspired to decide what is best for us to view/see/discuss and write. Long live the world economy and the benefit of bringing everyone into the same world order.

  • "RadioTimes.com Accidentally Included In UK Antipiracy Blocking"

    So... were they put in the list to block anti-piracy? Or put in the list to block piracy? /sarcasm

    The title COULD be a little on the ambiguous side, even though it's obvious what they mean in the context.

  • by pseudorand ( 603231 ) on Wednesday August 14, 2013 @02:44PM (#44567785)

    It should now be obvious to everyone that we're on a one way train to rampant government censorship enforced at the ISP level with governments exercising legal threats towards ISPs to get their (and by 'their' I mean big corporations, rich religious conservatives and peope who use terrorist fear mongering to keep their cushy jobs.) way, and that western powers, rather than China and the middle east, will be leading the way.

    But why is this really a problem? Do I care if they don't let me download pr0n? No. Do I care that they make me actually pay for my entertainment, possibly increasing the price? Not really. Am I scared of the next Hitler coming to power and using his control of the media to exterminate some subset of the population? Seems like a long shot at present. Will censorship prevent a few terrorist attacks by making it harder for them to communicate? Possibly.
    But all that junk is either unimportant (pr0n and piracy) or unlikely (Hitler and terrorists).

    This article demonstrates the real problem with censorship: incompetence. They'll block the wrong stuff and there's nothing I can do about it. There will be a place to report problems, but reports will be ignored, or at least take 6 months to get resolved. The entirety of the Internet will be rendered useless. We may as well all just go back to writing letters and making phone calls (assuming those don't get blocked too).

    I need to raise some money to buy a good supply of pens. Anyone want to buy a slightly used keyboard?

  • Should've switched to IPv6!

Nothing will ever be attempted if all possible objections must be first overcome. -- Dr. Johnson

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