Bid to block YouTube caused breakdown
LONDON, Feb 25: PakistanÂ’s attempts to block access to YouTube have been blamed for a near global blackout of the website on Sunday.
According to a BBC report, Google, the owner of YouTube, blamed the outage on “erroneous internet protocolsÂ” sourced in Pakistan.
BBC News says it has learnt that the nearly two-hour-long blackout was almost certainly connected to Pakistan Telecom and internet service provider PCCW.
The country ordered ISPs to block the video-sharing website because of content deemed offensive to Islam.
The BBC News website’s technology editor, Darren Waters, says that to block Pakistan’s citizens from accessing YouTube it is believed Pakistan Telecom ‘hijacked’ the web server address of the popular video site.
“What we need to know now is whether this was a mistake or a deliberate attempt by Pakistan to disrupt YouTube.”
Our Staff Reporter adds from Islamabad: The Pakistan Telecommunication Authority directed all internet service providers in the country to block the YouTube website.
According to a press release issued on Monday, the website was found to be running a highly provocative and blasphemous video.
It may be mentioned that video clips of anti-government protests, rigging in last week’s election, the May 12, 2007, bloodshed in Karachi, deposed Chief Justice Iftikhar Mohammed Chaudhry’s visits to different cities and other events pertaining to the judicial crisis and parodies of leaders of the former ruling parties and the president were also available on the website.
According to the press release, the PTA believed that the blasphemous footage were against the values of religious tolerance and peaceful coexistence, arousing deep anguish and distress across the Muslim world, and had the potential to cause more unrest and possible loss of life and property in the country.
It said the PTA had directed the ISPs to block the website keeping under consideration all the best practices and means so as to achieve the desired objectives without affecting those that were not concerned with the objectionable contents.