Print 34 comment(s) - last by akse.. on Feb 9 at 12:47 PM

Verizon says website is "explicitly blocked"

Many people will agree that consumers should have unfettered access to the internet via wireless and landline connections. There have been instances where access to specific websites and specific types of traffic have been filtered or outright blocked by ISPs and wireless carriers. In July 2009, AT&T Wireless blocked access to the 4chan message boards.

The 4chan site is a message board that reportedly has as many as 200,000 messages posted each day. 

The issue with the site and wireless carriers stems from the site being used to launch different types of internet attacks ranging from mere pranks to more serious network attacks. The website is reporting that it is being blocked by Verizon Wireless. The site posted a statement to its front page that read, "Over the past 72 hours, we've been receiving reports from Verizon Wireless customers having difficulty accessing the image boards."

4chan went on to claim that only traffic on port 80 was being blocked leading it to believe that the site had been intentionally blocked and that some sort of problem was not causing Verizon Wireless users to not be able to access the site. A 4chan administrator going by "moot" wrote that Verizon had been contacted and a Verizon representative said, "You'll need the customer to call to request it be unblocked."

The same user "moot" reported yesterday that after contacting the Verizon Network Repair Bureau the response received was that the site had been explicitly blocked. It's hard to say whether this is a good or a bad thing. If the site is a rally point for attacks online, some might argue that cutting the site off is a good thing. However, once you start down the slope of censoring and blocking content that some deem objectionable, those that use the same site for legitimate reasons are sure to be angered.

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RE: 4chan may be a cesspool
By omnicronx on 2/8/2010 2:49:41 PM , Rating: 0
I'm not condoning this either, I'm just saying from a business perspective there could be many reasons why Verizon blocked this address. If from a business perspective they feel that the site could do more harm to their users than good, they have every right to block it.

You don't have a legal right to watch child porn, thats why I used it an example. Verizon should be doing everything in their power to block this kind of content, if that means blocking this kind of site (which is well known for this kind of content) then I'm all for it.

For all intents and purposes, if I saw that content on my screen because I was accidentally forwarded from another site, I would be calling my carrier and making a complaint. If my kid saw it I may even take it further.

Of course this is all speculation, so there is no need to get worked up for it, but I do see where carriers could be coming from here, they could potentially have a lot to lose. (smartphones are not exactly secure right now either)

RE: 4chan may be a cesspool
By namechamps on 2/8/2010 3:21:39 PM , Rating: 5
If from a business perspective they feel that the site could do more harm to their users than good, they have every right to block it.

This is exactly why we net neutrality.

If VZ felt that "scary parts" of the internet should be blocked why not offer an optional service to block content based on a bunch of different criteria.

As long as it was optional I would have a no problem with it.

Hell verizon could even charge for it. Imagine the upsell. Parent on family plan could restrict their children from seeing porn, hate sites, gambling, etc.

win-win for the consumer & VZ.

When VZ starts deciding it knows better than me what I should be " allowed " to access that is when govt needs to rip the ISP a new one.

RE: 4chan may be a cesspool
By mindless1 on 2/8/2010 8:34:42 PM , Rating: 2
You're trying to argue away secret censorship which is an intolerable practice.

If they want to notify their customers that soon they will block 4chan, and give customers the option to cease their subscription to the ISP w/o penalty, then although I don't like censorship in general, I agree that they they might do it.

However, it is entirely inappropriate to compare to child porn. Until the specific content, the viewing of it, is made illegal it is totally inappropriate to censor it.

Verizon should not censor something merely because a certain % of society doesn't want the rest of society to have access. Personally I think society shouldn't have access to doughnuts but do you see those banned?

If you complain to your carrier because of some 'site your child was able to access and that site is not breaking the law, you're acting retarded and trying to shift blame from yourself for not talking to and monitoring your child's activities.

Carriers do have a lot to lose - customers if they don't stop censoring and denying access. Just because some illegal activity might result is no excuse.

Shoplifting is illegal, so we could say that because Walmart exists there is illegal activity, so do we then ban people from going to walmart because "somebody" has done something illegal there?

If Verizon were my ISP I'd drop them in an instant, it is my choice where to go on the internet and I will not give up that freedom!

RE: 4chan may be a cesspool
By wrekd on 2/9/2010 12:24:20 PM , Rating: 2
I'm only replying because I accidentally voted you up when I wanted to vote you down. Censorship is bad 'n stuff.

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