Thursday, July 20, 2006


Making this post sticky so it stays on top for the duration of this stupid ban. Updates, as and when available, at the bottom of this post.

Also, all you bloggers, please don't stop blogging.
That would be a failure on our part and giving in to the GOI vicissitudes.

So it looks like some ISPs in India are blocking access to Blogger and to Blogspot.

Wonder if we had anything to do with it?! ;-)

There are a few ways to get around this stupid ploy.


Perhaps Gsanks can compile list of songs to play while driving down to the MoT and then he could draft us a letter too!

Update 1:

Looks like Airtel has jumped the shark too. Anonymizer, public proxies and what not till such time as the GoI regains its common sense.

Chamique notices the problems too...

Gsanks as well...

The problem is only with Blogspot and not Blogger. So you can post but not read.

Start using a Feedreader, preferably a web-based one. Bloglines and Google Reader are good starts.

You might want to sign-up at the Indian Bloggers Collective.

Update 2:

Use the Right To Information Act. Get writing now!

Update 3:

Recluse has some thoughts on the legal options.

It looks like pkblogs has now been blocked too.

For the conspiracy theorists in you, this and this makes an interesting read.

VSNL and BSNL seem to have killed access to Blogspot, Typepad and Geocities too. Strangely, I'm on BSNL and can access the Blogspot just fine. But only Blogspot.

Rock on Freedom of Press!

Update 4:

To get around this stupid block, use Coral Cache. Essentially, you need to append

to to the hostname of any URL you want to access. For example, to access this post via CC, you would have to use a link as follows:

"Blogger does not seem to be blocked, but Blogspot is. That means a terrorist, if there's one using blogger to conceive plots, can still publish his information, and anyone with RSS feeds can still read what he is saying anyways." ~ zai

Some of the sites that have been blocked are:


Princess Kimberly? WTF?

/. picks up the thread. Digg as well. BoingBoing too. seems positively zippy today!

Update 5:

Poo. BSNL have blocked me out...

Update 6:

Aleph has put together a Greasemonkey script to work around this stupid limitation by rewriting all Blogspot URLs to go via Coral Cache.

You need:

1. Firefox 1.5
2. Greasemonkey
3. His special sauce aka the script.

Install them in that order and have fun.

Note that it will work only on links that you click on. GM can only operate on documents (rendered HTML). If there is a way of controlling the address bar, do let us know in the comments!

And a big hat-tip to Aleph too...

Update 7:

Recluse informs us that he has spoken with people who have Google in the loop and they are currently exploring legal options as regards the ban on Blogspot. He is also in touch with the legal department of a large ISP and will post updates as and when they become available. As a lawyer, he is not sure if we, as bloggers, or the ISP's have much of a leg to stand on.

Aleph has updated the GM script. This renames Geocities, Blogspot and Typepad URLs. It is easy to add further sites too. BTW, he stands corrected about the impossibility of rewriting the location bar. It is possible and an attempt was made and commented out.

Comments to alephnull at hcoop dot net. Distributed under the GPL

Update 8:

Additions to the list of blocked blogs via IE:

Read 'em and weep.

Update 9:

Managed to get the rest of the links, bringing the total up to 17. Here they are: This may very well be What the fuck?

Chamique has a great post up, do read it!


Anonymous said...


Anonymous said...

I swear! Could you add the RTI link and how to go about it? We should all file applications. 30 days of waitng but it could be worth it.

blr bytes said...

Done that. What sort of juvenile lunacy is this?

Anonymous said...

Curiouser and curiouser.

VSNL and BSNL still provide access to Blogspot domains. Maybe they've been more selective in their blocking. But Geocities and Typepad are blocked on both of them.

Fucking Orwelian this tamasha is.

Anonymous said...

Will try and make that list! ;)

About the RTI idea, I have a post up now where I discourage that - actually saw it suggested on rediff, but I think we should get a quicker response.


Anonymous said...

I am a SIMI activist and I am going to bomb Opus bcuz they serve pigs... boom boom

Anonymous said...

That Princess Kimberly thing floored me too! In fact the Indian Express says: "Sources in ISPs in Delhi as well as Mumbai confirmed that the one blog government has asked them to block is"

WTF? Exactly. Some poor sod getting drunk in college or something.

blr bytes said...

This is a terrorist?

Anonymous said...

One less terrorist

Anonymous said...

An updated version of the script is now available here.

This renames geocities, blogspot and typepad URLs. It is easy to add further sites too. BTW, I stand corrected about the impossibility of rewriting the location bar. It is possible, I just lack the javascript-fu to accomplish it. An attempt was made and commented out.

Comments to alephnull at hcoop dot net. Distributed under the GPL

Anonymous said...

Hi I work for the FBI,CIA,CBI,RAW and ISI. You guys are in BIG trouble. Wait to hear from me very soon !!

Anonymous said...

Provo, you must be a busy man.

BB, small clarification - I dont think we have much of a leg to stand on unless we get our hands on a written directive.

powerslave said...

India, a country that prides itself for it's educated and techie talent, is ruled by opinionated imbeciles who had trouble clearing standard tenth exams, and thus decided to rule the country. And sadder still, we let them.

blr bytes said...

I don't know if such a sweeping generelization can be made but it would hold true, in parts...

Woke said...

For the real story behind the fiasco, please read this

Anonymous said...








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