Re: UK blacklist (Re: Concerns about Singapore and other places)

Tim Chown <tjc@ecs.soton.ac.uk> Wed, 13 April 2016 09:49 UTC

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Subject: Re: UK blacklist (Re: Concerns about Singapore and other places)
From: Tim Chown <tjc@ecs.soton.ac.uk>
In-Reply-To: <570D641D.6070509@alvestrand.no>
Date: Wed, 13 Apr 2016 10:49:04 +0100
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To: Harald Alvestrand <harald@alvestrand.no>
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> On 12 Apr 2016, at 22:09, Harald Alvestrand <harald@alvestrand.no> wrote:
> 
> Den 12. april 2016 18:52, skrev Ted Lemon:
>> The UK filter is an "opt out" filter, and I assume that we (the IETF)
>> opted out.   Even the "opt out" blocking is voluntary at present--an ISP
>> is not required by law to have a filter, but in practice the big ones do.
> 
> 
> The particular case that made the blacklist famous in at least some
> fora, and exposed quite a bit on how it worked:
> 
> https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Internet_Watch_Foundation_and_Wikipedia
> 
> "the action also had some indirect effects on Wikipedia, namely
> temporarily preventing all editors using said ISPs in the UK from
> contributing to any page of the encyclopaedia, and preventing anonymous
> edits from these ISPs while the URL remained on the blacklist. This was
> described by the IWF as unintended "collateral damage".[7] This was due
> to the proxies used to access Wikipedia, as Wikipedia implements a
> blocking policy whereby contributors can be blocked if they vandalise
> the encyclopaedia. Therefore, all vandalism coming from one ISP would be
> directed through one proxy—hence one IP—and all of the ISP's customers
> using that proxy would be barred from editing.”

The broader context is here (with all the usual caveats over Wikipedia accuracy):

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Internet_censorship_in_the_United_Kingdom

See the section on the Introduction of Cleanfeed.

The other controversy, as mentioned in the link above, is that in 2011 a judge ordered Cleanfeed be used to block access to a p2p filesharing system called Newzbin2, hence concern over creeping and unaccountable scope of filtering (because the filter list is not viewable due to the primary use of the system), see http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-14322957. 

Tim