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ISP mistake cuts off YouTube, Pakistan from the internet

The world was cut off from YouTube and Pakistan was cut off from the world, due to a series of mistakes in handling Pakistan’s decree to block the popular video-sharing site.

It all started on Sunday, when Pakistani officials announced that the country will begin censoring YouTube, citing videos considered blasphemous to the country’s Islamic values.

According to Information Week, Pakistan’s ISPs were given immediate orders to block the popular video-sharing site. One such ISP, PieNet, blocked YouTube in such a way that requests to the site were routed to a webpage that they saw fit. Trouble set in afterwards, when the block was propagated to Hong Kong-based telecom provider PCCW. Technical errors caused PCCW’s changes to propagate throughout the entire world, sending the world’s YouTube requests to PieNet’s block page.

Details of what happened next are unclear, but it appears PCCW spotted the error and saw fit to cut off Pakistan’s internet access until it resolved the issue.

“The leadership of Pakistan just created a massive Denial of Service [attack] on their own country,” wrote blogger Richard Stiennon in ZDNet’s Threat Chaos.

According to YouTube parent Google, problems lasted for “about two hours.”

“Traffic to YouTube was routed according to erroneous internet protocols, and many users around the world could not access our site,” said Google in a statement, noting that it is “working with others in the internet community to prevent this from happening again.”

Speaking with the BBC, an unnamed networking expert thinks the blackout was “probably a simple mistake made by an engineer … there’s nothing to suggest this was malicious.”

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Hilarity Ensues
By DASQ on 2/25/2008 6:38:20 PM , Rating: 5
Network admin blunders on a world scale!

I do like how they just toggled Pakistan off.

RE: Hilarity Ensues
By Xerio on 2/25/2008 6:49:04 PM , Rating: 1
HOLY CRAP! Who knew it would be so easy to kill YouTube, even for just a little while?

RE: Hilarity Ensues
By fk49 on 2/25/2008 10:07:26 PM , Rating: 4
I mean you know the internet is just a series of Tubes right?

RE: Hilarity Ensues
By T4RTER S4UCE on 2/26/2008 6:46:11 PM , Rating: 2
Ted Stevens is a fool,
the internet is obviously a truck.

RE: Hilarity Ensues
By Samus on 2/25/2008 7:01:47 PM , Rating: 5
I think it's funny that YouTube won't cooperate with Pakistan (and many other country's) and remove material that is blasphemous to their religion...and at the same time YouTube is so forward to cooperate with the 'Scientologists' and remove everything from Tom Cruise's rampage to South Park cut-scenes they feel is blasphemous to them.

How is a whole country powerless when a tiny, virtually undocumented religion reigns supreme?

RE: Hilarity Ensues
By OblivionMage on 2/25/2008 7:10:18 PM , Rating: 3
Freedom of speech is one thing, the video's considered 'blasphemous' are not against the TOS and so why should they be removed?

The video of Tom Cruise was considered to be copyrighted (And Scientology has a *crap* load of lawyers who call it other things), and South Park cut-scenes are also copyrighted.

Scientology is not powerless, and how was Pakistan rendered helpless? They can block youtube if they want, but why should youtube conform to their countries specific views? Hell, if every website had to follow every country/religions views, there would not be much of an internet left.

RE: Hilarity Ensues
By Fnoob on 2/25/2008 7:30:33 PM , Rating: 5
Hell, if every website had to follow every country/religions views, there would not be much of an internet left.

As the last remaining file, 'Pong' will be removed due to it's blatant black and white separationism.

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