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Error 451 is the new HTTP code for online censorship

2015-12-22 03:09 by


The group responsible for Internet standards, the Internet Engineering Steering Group (IESG) has added yet another HTTP error code for browsers. The new code – 451 - will indicate that the website is unavailable for legal, rather than technical, reasons. In other words, it will reflect government censorship.

The chosen number is in honor of Ray Bradbury's classic novel Fahrenheit 451 in which books are banned and any found are burned. Previously, the 403 forbidden status code has been used by some sites to show that access is denied due to legal limitations.

Status codes, available within the 100s to 500s, are most commonly encountered when something with a website goes wrong and prevents a user from accessing it.

The 451 HTTP status code has been long anticipated by anti-censorship advocates. It was first proposed back in 2013 to specify when pages weren't available because of legal reasons such as a web page censored by the government, or if the page was deemed dangerous to national security, copyright, or privacy.

Web publishers and administrators can start to implement the new status code on their websites.

Read more -here-


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