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U.S. Authorities Shut Down WordPress Host With 73,000 Blogs
07-17-2010, 05:29 PM,
#4
Censorship Bomb via Copyright Law: U.S. Shut Down WordPress Host With 73,000 Blogs
Quote:U.S. Authorities Shut Down WordPress Host With 73,000 Blogs
Written by enigmax on July 16, 2010

After the U.S. Government took action against several sites connected to movie streaming recently, nerves are jangling over the possibility that this is just the beginning of a wider crackdown. Now it appears that a free blogging platform has been taken down by its hosting provider on orders from the U.S. authorities on grounds of “a history of abuse”. More than 73,000 blogs are out of action as a result.

Hot on the heels of recent threats from Vice President Joe Biden and Intellectual Property Enforcement Coordinator Victoria Espinel directed at sites offering unauthorized movies and music, last month U.S. authorities targeted several sites they claimed were connected to the streaming of infringing video material.

Operation In Our Sites‘ targeted several sites including TVShack.net, Movies-Links.TV, FilesPump.com, Now-Movies.com, PlanetMoviez.com, ThePirateCity.org, ZML.com, NinjaVideo.net and NinjaThis.net. In almost unprecedented action, the domain names of 7 sites were seized and indications are that others – The Pirate Bay and MegaUpload – narrowly avoided the same fate.

Fears remain, however, that this action is only the beginning, and that more sites will be targeted as the months roll on. Indeed, TorrentFreak has already received information that other sites, so far unnamed in the media, are being monitored by the authorities on copyright grounds.

Now, according to the owner of a free WordPress platform which hosts more than 73,000 blogs, his network of sites has been completely shut down on the orders of the authorities.

Blogetery.com has been with host BurstNet for 7 months but on Friday July 9th the site disappeared. The following Monday the owner received an email from BurstNet:

Due to the history of abuse and on going abuse on this ‘bn.***********’ server.

We have opted to terminate this server, effective immediately. This termination applies to: bn.affiliateplex.com

Abuse Department
BurstNET Technologies, Inc

Further correspondence received the following response:

Bn.xx*********** was terminated by request of law enforcement officials, due to material hosted on the server.

We are limited as to the details we can provide to you, but note that this was a critical matter and the only available option to us was to immediately deactivate the server.

…and a later clarification:

Please note that this was not a typical case, in which suspension and notification would be the norm. This was a critical matter brought to our attention by law enforcement officials. We had to immediately remove the server.

“We notified him [the Blogetery owner] when we terminated it [the server], and we refunded him his money to his account, because he has other servers with us If he wants the refund to his card, we can easily do that. However, it should be the least of his concerns,” A BurstNet representative later confirmed.

“Simply put: We cannot give him his data nor can we provide any other details. By stating this, most would recognize that something serious is afoot.”

Due to the fact that the authorities aren’t sharing information and BurstNet are sworn to secrecy, it is proving almost impossible to confirm the exact reason why Blogetery has been completely taken down. The owner does, however, admit to handling many copyright-related cease and desists in the past, albeit in a timely manner as the DMCA requires.

Nevertheless, a couple of quick Google searches which are likely to turn up blogs which link to copyright material appear to do just that – here, here and here. That said, on any network this large this type of activity is bound to happen. Many thousands of blogs on the same platform would have been perfectly legal.

“All of the users are without service just like when the Pirate Bay raids happened and all the people who were on the host sites were also taken down,” pointed out an annoyed Blogetery user who contacted TorrentFreak. “I have lost my personal site also and I don’t have any way to contact the owner since his contact info was on the blogetery.com site & that was the only way to contact him.”

Indeed, 73,000 blogs is a significant number to take down in one swoop, regardless of what some users of the site may or may not have been doing. Time will tell if it was indeed a copyright complaint that took down the service but the signs are certainly there. Not so long ago the conclusion that this type of action could be taken on copyright grounds would have been dismissed out of hand, but the current atmosphere seems to be changing.
http://digg.com/politics/U_S_Authorities_Shut_Down_Wordpress_Host_With_73_000_Blogs
http://torrentfreak.com/u-s-authorities-shut-down-wordpress-host-with-73000-blogs-100716/

This is one of the first casualties of mass blog censorship by way of copyright claims. Hey .. by this logic they should shut Google down.

Although a massive amount of these are certainly participants in file sharing, this shut down 1000s of legitimate alternative news blogs. A search for Obama turned up over 1300 hits, 1200+ mentioning politics, 4200 talk about police and almost 2000 pages containing the term FBI. In an ironic twist I got over 4000 page hits with the term censor.

Related Net Censorship Threads:

Mininova bites the dust
http://concen.org/forum/showthread.php?tid=30496

Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement
http://concen.org/forum/showthread.php?tid=33810

NSA Creating Spy System to Monitor Domestic Infrastructure
http://concen.org/forum/showthread.php?tid=33834

Pentagon's Cyber Command: Civilian Infrastructure a "Legitimate" Target
http://concen.org/forum/showthread.php?tid=32606

Cyberwar, the Internet and the Militarization of Civil Society
http://concen.org/forum/showthread.php?tid=32713

Frightening new cyber-war piece from Tom Burghardt. Cyber 9/11?
http://concen.org/forum/showthread.php?tid=33640

FCC to toughen internet rules
http://concen.org/forum/showthread.php?tid=33482

Net Neutrality
http://concen.org/forum/showthread.php?tid=342

DNSSEC: the internet's International Criminal Court?
http://concen.org/forum/showthread.php?tid=32841

Google pulls the same shit it bashes China for... (this is worth your time to read)
http://concen.org/forum/showthread.php?tid=32524

Alternatives to the internet
http://concen.org/forum/showthread.php?tid=30313

Google teams up with National Security Agency to tackle cyber attacks
http://concen.org/forum/showthread.php?tid=31344

Obama Information Czar Outlined Plan For Government To Infiltrate Conspiracy Groups
http://concen.org/forum/showthread.php?tid=31035

Australia plans Chinese-style internet filtering
http://concen.org/forum/showthread.php?tid=30681

The Dawning of Internet Censorship in Germany
http://concen.org/forum/showthread.php?tid=2647
There are no others, there is only us.
http://FastTadpole.com/
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Censorship Bomb via Copyright Law: U.S. Shut Down WordPress Host With 73,000 Blogs - FastTadpole - 07-17-2010, 05:29 PM

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