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Twitter Blocked in Pakistan – Permanently or Weekend Testing?

Twitter Blocked in PakistanAs of 1:00pm Sunday Twitter.com has become inaccessible to all users in Pakistan. Practically all ISP’s have reports of users complaining of twitter.com being inaccessible. Ever since the reports emerged we have asked affected users to help test the site from their ISP connections and within minutes we had hundreds of reports The traceroute shows a very interesting fact, the block is at the DNS level, the url is not resolving right from the get go

traceroute twitter.com
traceroute: unknown host twitter.com

When you do a simple traceroute for yahoo.com

traceroute yahoo.com
traceroute: Warning: yahoo.com has multiple addresses; using 72.30.38.140
traceroute to yahoo.com (72.30.38.140), 64 hops max, 52 byte packets
1 192.168.0.10 (192.168.0.10) 2260.190 ms 0.864 ms 0.705 ms
2 203.99.169.18 (203.99.169.18) 24.729 ms 24.442 ms 21.330 ms
3 10.0.2.6 (10.0.2.6) 43.865 ms 43.745 ms 43.108 ms
4 203.99.170.234 (203.99.170.234) 46.673 ms 46.131 ms 45.280 ms
5 rwp44.pie.net.pk (221.120.253.1) 45.757 ms 46.353 ms 43.939 ms
6 rwp44.pie.net.pk (221.120.254.38) 43.749 ms 44.675 ms 44.910 ms
7 static-khi-ni01-swa.pie.net.pk (202.125.128.162) 44.823 ms 44.716 ms 45.713 ms
8 khi77.ptcl.net.pk (202.125.129.110) 181.540 ms 179.108 ms 180.835 ms
9 ge-1-3-0.pat1.ams.yahoo.com (195.69.145.110) 175.123 ms 176.314 ms 176.563 ms

Shows that the pings head to PIE [Pakistan Internet Exchange] in Rawalpindi then to the Karachi PIE server before heading out to Yahoo. Twitter does not even get beyond the first hop

My gutt feeling is that PTA is just testing their URL Filtering system, we had reports of them testing some image servers on facebook last week, and it disappeared by the evening. PTA choose Sunday to avoid any legal backlash exploiting the courts day off. I also dont buy into the argument of Express News that the access to Twitter was blocked due to an ongoing “competition” of Prophet Muhammad’s (pbuh) caricatures. As no one knew about this “in Pakistan” and it was an unknown issue on twitter to target this portal on Sunday afternoon, there seems to be no evidence to come to that conclusion and feel Tribune should be careful in making such sweeping statements on such a sensitive issue can spark an outlash. I definitely believe they are testing their system. Though the civil society has to its credit a stay order on the Pakistan Telecommunication Authority preventing them from blocking websites obtained on 19th April 2012 which can be used against them.

Once they get through these testing days I am sure it can be later used as and when needed. Though the argument presented by PTA is that it needs this technology to crack down on Terrorism related issue, but one may never know when it can be used for political censorship

Posted by on May 20, 2012.

Tags: , ,

Categories: Censorship, Pakistan, Technology, Websites

16 Responses

  1. [...] may be no direct blasphemy accusation involved today at all… linking to portions of the post Twitter Blocked in Pakistan – Permanently or Weekend Testing? /* Tags: Censorship, twitter Comment Meta: Leave a comment | Subscribe to the Comment [...]

    by A small mention on TechCrunch during Twitter Blocking | Teeth Maestro on May 21, 2012 at 2:00 am

  2. [...] I opined in my personal blog that it was PTA merely testing their new URL Filtering service: My gutt feeling is that PTA is just testing their URL Filtering system, we had reports of them [...]

    by Pakistan: Twitter Goes Through A Weekend Of Censorship · Global Voices on May 21, 2012 at 2:23 am

  3. [...] we opined in my personal blog that it was PTA merely testing their new URL Filtering service: My gutt feeling is that PTA is only contrast their URL Filtering system, we had reports of them [...]

    by Pakistan: Twitter Goes Through A Weekend Of Censorship | Times of News on May 21, 2012 at 3:02 am

  4. [...] I opined in my personal blog that it was PTA merely testing their new URL Filtering service: My gutt feeling is that PTA is just testing their URL Filtering system, we had reports of them [...]

    by Pakistan: Twitter Goes Through A Weekend Of Censorship :: Elites TV on May 21, 2012 at 3:24 am

  5. [...] Day” competition - and Pakistan’s collective panties have been throughly bunched. Or, they’re testing a new URL filtering system. Both motives [...]

    by Pakistan Blocks Twitter Temporarily, Nothing is Achieved – And So it Should Be | Faine Opines on May 21, 2012 at 5:02 am

  6. Rehman Malik is still on about how it was in fact about "anti islamic tweets".

    by Zahid Sindhu on May 21, 2012 at 6:12 am

  7. [...] to take down at the Pakistani government’s request. Others suggested it may be part of government tests of its url filtering system. The blocks ended after the Pakistani Prime Minister issued an order to [...]

    by Netizen Report: Eurovision Edition - Global Voices Advocacy on May 22, 2012 at 8:32 pm

  8. [...] take down at the Pakistani government’s request. Others suggested it may be part of government tests of its url filtering system. The blocks ended after the Pakistani Prime Minister issued an order [...]

    by Netizen Report: Eurovision Edition – The Netizen Project on May 22, 2012 at 10:59 pm

  9. [...] bloggers and free speech activists in Pakistan believe that the Twitter ban was a “test run” by the IT ministry — a chance to flex its censorship muscles. With the experiment occurring months [...]

    by Twitchy About Twitter – New York Times (blog) « « on May 23, 2012 at 2:09 am

  10. [...] “My gut  feeling is that PTA is just testing their URL filtering system,” wrote the Pakistani tech blogger “Teeth Maestro:” “We had reports of them testing some image servers on Facebook [...]

    by Why Did Pakistan Shut Off Twitter? « Digital Frontiers on May 23, 2012 at 2:46 am

  11. [...] laughing. “My gut  feeling is that PTA is usually contrast their URL filtering system,” wrote the Pakistani tech blogger “Teeth Maestro:” “We had reports of them contrast some picture servers on Facebook final [...]

    by Flood , Health and Education in Pakistan on May 23, 2012 at 6:07 am

  12. I think it won't permanently block it, unless Pakistan did something to Twitter.

    by Pediatric Dentist on Jun 8, 2012 at 6:27 pm

  13. i guess there are always ways around this? any way hope that this doesnt happen again

    by pia appointed agent on Jun 27, 2012 at 8:25 am

  14. [...] • 翻墙必读• 科学上网• 防火长城• 墙外导航(整理中)• 禁书禁片• 禁片大全• 禁书下载(整理中)• 有关部门• 中宣部• 国新办• 网络监控• 国保警察• 真理部• 敏感词库• 河蟹档案• 五毛大观• 网络审查• 真理部指令• 马勒戈壁• 网络民议• 时政漫画• 网络段子• 热传视频• 歌曲精选• 草泥马语• 民主宪政• 人权记录• 天安门母亲• 良心犯• 异议人士• 国家安全罪• 强制堕胎• 结石宝宝• 黑监狱• 维权律师• 政治改革• 新闻自由• 司法独立• 宗教自由• 更多专题• 食品安全• 强制拆迁• 新疆• 西藏• 南海• 香港• 台湾• 朝鲜• 中美关系• 中俄关系• 中日关系• 中法关系• 中德关系• 中印关系 Global Voices | 网民报导:欧洲歌唱大赛专刊 原文2012年欧洲歌唱大赛预演的舞台,照片由Zeljko Joksimovic提供本篇报导多由 Weiping Li, James Losey, Tom Risen, and Sarah Myers研究、编辑与撰写身为2012年欧洲歌唱大赛主办国的亚赛拜然,在本周准备这场年度赛事之时,遭遇了好几次网路风波。首先是歌唱大赛的网站www.eurovision.az 及www.eurovision.tv 遭莫名团体攻击,一天之後,一家大型手机通讯商的网路又中断,影响一百多万个用户。同时,该国政府宣布,将会逐步扩张网路宽频建设,以帮助更多民众上网。不 过,让亚国政府难堪的是,其人权及网路政策近来备受抨击。在上周网民报导中,我们提及亚国政府采吓阻策略,要民众远离社交网站。上个月,一个瑞典新闻节目 Uppdrag Granskning则揭露,亚国政府使用瑞典通讯巨人Teliasonera的设备监视民众,进而衍生许多不堪的丑闻,包括政府讯问好几位亚国公民,原 因仅是因为这些人在2009年的欧洲歌唱大赛中,投票给亚美尼亚歌曲。若想了解更多亚赛拜然的言论自由状况,可见「媒体权利机构」去年发布的报告。世界各地的审查制度及监控新闻依旧不绝,续见本周报导:审查制度上 周日下午,巴基斯坦的社交媒体使用者发现,推特网站遭到封锁,持续数个小时,接下来的一整天,陆续有网友回报各种消息。虽然封锁的实际原因仍然不明,但 《快讯时报》记者宣称,事件缘起於推特上关於先知穆罕默德讽刺漫画的「亵渎」竞赛讯息。虽然巴国政府要求推特删文,推特拒绝不从。也有人认为,可能是巴国 政府在测试其网址审筛系统。虽然巴基斯坦总理後来出面,下令解除封锁,但这起事件再度为巴基斯坦的网路自由投下阴影。南美的委内瑞拉网站La Patilla也被国营网路服务商封锁,原因可能是该网站上一则影片及即时视讯,揭露了委内瑞拉最近一起囚犯及警卫之间的冲突。过去一个星期,几个国家的立法者不约而同,打算采取立法行动,规范网路:俄国下议院副议长要求俄国总检察长,起诉利用社交媒体传散极端主义的民众。玻利维亚参议院也提案,限制社交网路上的种族歧视言论。印度资讯部长卡庇·赛博(Kapil Sibal)表示,为了回应反对党议员的抗议,他会邀请国会议员及利害关系人举行会议,讨论《2011资讯科技规范》。批评该规范的人认为,该法赋予政府过多的审查及监控权力。巴林政府打算起诉将暴动影片上传至网路的民众。迫害巴林政府也加剧迫害社会运动人士:该政府宣布,将对张贴有误或有辱政权讯息者,采取行动。此外,人权运动者纳柏·拉加(Nabeel Rajab)本周现身法院。面对检方指控其利用网路发起非法集会,他回应道:「这些逮捕丶审判我的决定,都是出於政治因素」。在其他中东地区:科威特部落客劳伦斯·艾拉西迪(Lawrence al-Rashidi)因为在网上侮辱王储,被判处十年徒刑,并罚款1,000元科威特币。伊朗一名不知名的部落客由於「干扰公共意见」而被捕。叙利亚政府释放八名在大马士革言论自由媒体中心突袭行动中被捕的记者及部落客,但仍有三十一名运动人士及记者仍被羁押。监控美国最高法院同意审理一件政府监控案。在该案中,美国政府使用电子监控设备,监视与恐怖团体有关人士的国际通讯,其中包括古巴关达纳摩海湾囚犯的律师与记者。伦敦大都会警察的十六个辖区装置了新科技,从此警局可以在短短几分钟内取得在押嫌犯的电话记录,无论这些嫌犯事後有无被控犯罪。网路君主根据《华尔街日报》报导,中国网路门户「新浪」2012年第一季经营亏损,部分原因可能是添雇人手审查内容,导致经营成本增加。伊朗威胁控告Google,因为该公司未在Google地图上标明「波斯湾」。Facebook — 该公司在星期五的上市之举,被视为「失败」之作 — 又被使用者以侵犯隐私为由,告上法庭,求偿一千五百万美元。原告宣称脸书继续追踪使用者的网路活动,即便使用者都已登出服务。由於例如Facebook之 类的企业明目张胆剥削使用者资料,以换取公司收益,因此位於巴黎的网路权利团体「网路无疆界」号召「组成电子联盟,提升公众对於个人资料的重视,并且发起 公众辩论」。国家政策伊朗通讯部长命令该国银行丶保险公司以及电信业者,不可使用外国业者的电邮服务,例如雅虎及Google,与顾客通讯。捍卫网路,抵抗《停止网路盗版法案》(SOPA)的美国众议员德罗·以萨(Darell Issa)在其众包(crowdsourcing)网站「麦迪逊平台」(Madison platform)公布一份外泄的草稿,内容是美国在《泛太平洋夥伴经济关系协议》(TPP)中的美国协商立场。至目前为止,TPP仍在秘密的情况下协议,以萨众议员呼吁政府公布更多关於协商的程序及内容。五十位法学界意见领袖写了一封公开信,致书参议院财政委员会,主张唯一合法批准《反假冒贸易协定》(ACTA)的程序是由国会通过。荷兰成为第一个建立网路中立法律架构的国家。网路治理三十多个来自全球各地的公民社会组织呈递一封给国际电信联盟(ITU)秘书总长杜霭博士(Dr. Hamadoun Touré)的公开信,希望公民社会的利害关系人也能全程丶公平且实质地参与国际电信全球会议。国际电信联盟将在十二月举行会议,辩论是否将网路自由治理的条文,加入这项已有二十四年历史的条约。在会议召开之前,美国参议院的两党也逐渐倾向将支持网路自由列为首要顺序。一个由多方利害关系人组成,讨论网路未来的论坛「资讯社会高峰会」上星期於日内瓦举行。据报导,网路治理的未来是热门议题,但意见分歧。版权芬兰一法院判决,开放无线网路的所有人无需为他人使用该网路而侵犯着作权的行为负责。在此同时,印度一法院也以侵犯着作权为由,要求网路业者封锁数家网站,包括 Vimeo, DailyMotion,The Pirate Bay, and Pastebin。网路安全海盗湾网站遭受大规模的阻断式服务攻击(DDoS),以致该网站断线24小时。遭受攻击的原因有可能是因其批评一项由匿名组织发动,目标对象为维京媒体网站(Virgin Media)的攻击行动。维京媒体是第一个根据英国法院判决,封锁海盗湾网站的网路服务业者。据报导,尚比亚的公民新闻网站「尚比亚看门狗」遭骇客入侵,罪魁祸首可能是当权的「爱国前线」政府。骇客利用国际特赦组织网站Java软体的漏洞,使该网站成了恶意软体的发散源头。另外,一些使用者还见到维基百科网站上出现广告,身为非营利组织的维基百科说,这其实是使用者的电脑本身感染了病毒。杰 瑞米·汉莫德(Jeremy Hammond)是匿名组织外围团体鲁兹赛克(LulzSec)的一员。他在由纽约联邦法院审理的几个案件中,主张「无罪」。汉莫德是去年安全智库 Strafor被骇案的主嫌,除此之外,其被控参与的案件还包括从索尼影业丶InfraGard Atlanta等数个网站下载信用卡资料。研究人员指出,骇客可以从远端控制许多与网路相连的安全摄影机。许多银行丶零售商及公司,都使用此种摄影机。中国的行动通讯及网路制造商中兴公司承认,该公司生产的某个手机型号植有後门,可以让他人取得系统管理权限(root access)。中兴已经承诺公布修补安全漏洞的方法。酷玩意儿Google执行董事长艾力克·施密特(Eric Schmidt)在波士顿大学毕业典礼致词中,要这些毕业生们「把你的眼从电脑萤幕上别开,看着你所爱的人的眼睛。与他说话,好好地说说话」。网路之父之一的范·瑟夫(Vint Cerf),在F2C的演讲影片请见此处。出版与研究    Sara Kehaulani Goo: Facebook: a profile of its ‘friends’    The Internet Society, OECD, United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization: The Relationship Between Local Content, Internet Development, and Access Prices    Mobile Internet Censorship: What’s happening and what we can do about it, Open Rights Group and the LSE Media Project    How Should the Internet Governance Forum (IGF) be Improved? by Christopher Steck, Telefonica.郵件訂閱網民報導與數位時代公民權益之未來相關的活動,請參閱全球之聲行事曆。校對:Sue Wong 作者 Rebecca MacKinnon · 译者 Weiping Li · 阅读原文 en · 则留言 (0) 分享: HEMiDEMi · MyShare · Shouker · facebook · twitter · reddit · StumbleUpon · delicious · Instapaper本文由自动聚合程序取自网络,内容和观点不代表数字时代立场 定期获得翻墙信息?请电邮订阅数字时代 [...]

    by Global Voices | 网民报导:欧洲歌唱大赛专刊 - 中国数字时代 on Jun 30, 2012 at 8:30 pm

  15. [...] 上 周日下午,巴基斯坦的社交媒体使用者发现,推特网站遭到封锁,持续数个小时,接下来的一整天,陆续有网友回报各种消息。虽然封锁的实际原因仍然不明,但 《快讯时报》记者宣称,事件缘起於推特上关於先知穆罕默德讽刺漫画的「亵渎」竞赛讯息。虽然巴国政府要求推特删文,推特拒绝不从。也有人认为,可能是巴国 政府在测试其网址审筛系统。虽然巴基斯坦总理後来出面,下令解除封锁,但这起事件再度为巴基斯坦的网路自由投下阴影。 [...]

    by Global Voices | 网民报导:欧洲歌唱大赛专刊 - 中国数字时代 on Jul 1, 2012 at 1:56 am

  16. [...] ισχυρίστηκαν ότι η διακοπή μπορεί να οφείλονταν σε δοκιμές [en] του συστήματος της κυβέρνησης για φιλτράρισμα [...]

    by Netizen Report: Eurovision Edition · Global Voices στα Ελληνικά on Oct 17, 2012 at 1:58 pm

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About Teeth Maestro

Teeth Maestro, the blog name of Dr. Awab Alvi ia dentist practicing in Karachi, Pakistan. He graduated with a dental degree (BDS) from de’Montmorency College of Dentistry, Lahore and then proceeded to Saint Louis University for a Masters Degree (MSc) in the field of Orthodontics (Braces) he later went for an extensive study at the […]more →

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