North American Network Operators Group

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Re: Network Level Content Blocking (UK)

  • From: Sean Donelan
  • Date: Thu Jun 07 12:11:07 2007

On Thu, 7 Jun 2007, James Blessing wrote:
1. Revocation of mere conduit status; by inspecting certain content and
preventing access to it the ISP is doing more that just passing packets
and is getting involved in the content.

Its not "content" blocking, its source/destination blocking.

While IWF may decide to list a particular source/destination based on its view of content, the network doesn't know look at or know what the content is and blocks anything at that source/destination address. The "address" may be an application layer "address," i.e. a URL part rather than a network layer address. But if the "address" is dynamically generated or changed, it may not have the same content.

Some cellular networks still have walled gardens, which only allow access to "approved" source/destinations. Again not based on content, but
based on business relationships with the cellular network operator.

Once you understand its the network isn't blocking "content" but rather an ever expanding list of sources/destinations, the real question is how can you be certain the bad stuff and good stuff will stay in separate places. Or will the bad stuff continue to migrate elsewhere until you've
blocked most of the Internet, and only "approved" sources/destinations