A while ago, I discussed the proliferation of “*.chan.org” sites. Now, western U.S. division of AT&T has blocked it’s internet subscribers from the site “img.4chan.org/b”. 4chan.org, the home of the original /b/ board and the ‘Anonymous’ group, is a bastion of filth, pornography, shock, and general failure ripe for banning from the internet. If it were to disappear tomorrow, it wouldn’t be much of a loss. Oddly, it’s also well loved for being.. well, all of those things.
Censorship, regardless of the victim, is unconscionable in America. 4Chan, even though it attempts to censor itself from the worst predilections of our society, still makes itself an easy target for this type of bias. Regardless, this incident of blatant censorship is an unusual move for a liberal-minded west coast area. Whether AT&T will be able to continue this policy is too soon to tell. The real problem is that, if it’s accepted there, AT&T and other telecoms in more conservative areas of the country will jump at the chance to do the same. The next 24 hours should be interesting.
…Then again, this could just be another 4chan hoax.
UPDATE: The AT&T blockage was father-spread than originally thought. In a statement unearthed by DailyKOS, AT&T stated the following:
“AT&T has confirmed that they are “currently blocking portions of the internet site 4chan.org”, but states that they are “following the practices of their policy department.”
“Customers may have trouble accessing http://4chan.org , this is a security issue and there is nothing we can do to assist them at this time.”
As of July 27th, AT&T is allowing uncensored access. No further statements have been offered by AT&T.
On a related note…DDoS-ing should be taught in high-school along with cake-baking and self-defense.