Torrent Sites Blocked in UK
Yesterday, we announced that all adult content would be blocked for UK residents. We also reported that publishers are urging companies like Google to remove pirated websites from the Internet. Today, we report that a ton of UK torrent (and other) websites have been blocked from view.
The latest torrent sites to be blocked are part of a wider movement to bank any pirated content from the Internet.
Yes, folks, it's true: Internet censorship is well under way. Here's the scoop.
EZTV and YIFY Torrent Sites Blocked
The movie industry group FACT is behind the latest blocks. The group was responsible for the blocking of The Pirate Bay by many UK ISPs back in May of 2012. The group has just blocked torrent sites EZTV and YIFY, and a group spokesperson has told press that these won't be the last sites to come under the group's fire.
FACT wants to get rid of all pirate sites on the Internet, and this means blocking access to those sites. The amount of court orders issuing take down requests for torrent sites is on the rise in the UK, too. Groups like FACT are often behind these court orders. Targeting torrent and pirate sites isn't just happening across the pond either.
Many organizations and groups are urging courts in North America to take down similar sites as well. But, where does it all end? When does it go too far? More importantly (for site owners) what will get your site blocked?
It may be one thing to ask a cheap hosting company to take down a site that offers pirated material. It's another thing to block user access to those sites – that's censorship. This type of censorship has many people worried, too. Where does it all end? What can a website owner do to prevent this kind of block? Or, to prevent activist groups from trying to take down such a site?
Movie industry groups like FACT only go after sites that offer free pirated downloads. Music industry groups often target sites that offer free music downloads. The best way, obviously, to avoid this kind of targeting is to make sure that all content on your site is legal, and that you've gained permission from the right people to offer various downloads. What about content that may be considered lewd or “adult” by some organizations? Is this content safe? Maybe not.
The definitions that sites like Bing and Google are devising are somewhat unclear at the time being. These companies want to block content that is inappropriate from view (mostly child pornography), but what's appropriate will be up to those companies to decide. That's kind of a scary thing, isn't it?
It may start out in a noble manner by blocking something like child pornography, but it may end in a serious blockade of anything deemed inappropriate. Only time will tell. For now, pay attention to the content on your site, and don't give anyone a reason to target what you're offering. For now, that's the best that you can do.