The government ‘might’ let people check if their website is being blocked…Government draws up a white list to prevent the most embarrassing examples of overblocking

Posted: 31 January, 2014 in Internet Blocking
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UKCCIS logoThe government is drawing up a white list of a few websites incorrectly blocked by the negligent blocking algorithms that it demanded ISPs to implement.

Many of the sites on the list are those that aim to educate children and others about health, sex education and drugs issues. The whitelist will be used to ensure the those sites that cause the government embarrassment will not be immediately blocked.

The list has emerged from a working group looking into inaccurate blocking and how to fix the problem. The group is also looking into ways to set up a standard system that will let any site which thinks it has been wrongly blocked tell ISPs about the mistake so it can get on to the approved list.

Soon the list would be shared among ISPs that had introduced network-level filters to ensure that the educational sites were widely viewable. The need for the list of sites wrongly blocked would become more pressing in 2014 as ISPs contacted established customers and asked them to choose whether to switch on the filters, he said. Currently most big UK ISPs only ask new customers to make a choice about net filters.

A spokesman for the Internet Service Provides Association said:

There’s a growing realisation that filters are not perfect and will lead to some over-blocking, There’s a feeling that some sites sit in a grey area and more needs to be done for them.

David Miles, who chairs the working group on over-blocking for the government’s UK Council for Child Internet Safety, said:

Eventually, standardised systems ‘might’ emerge that let sites check if their content falls foul of the filters, or put in place a simple way for sites to inform all ISPs that they do not have inappropriate content.

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