Plugging holes and plugging mouths

Years ago, the powers that be here in Turkey decided that YouTube needed to be blocked. So they forced the (centralized) DNS servers to redirect all youtube.com requests to a “no YouTube for you” page. Then people figured out that if they use an independent DNS service (e.g., OpenDNS and later Google) the addresses would resolve as they should. And life was good. Not only were the gates to YouTube effectively re-opened, but you also gained access to myriad other banned sites (mostly pron that was speculatively banned on the basis of copyright infringement (!), but a lot of actually useful stuff as well.)

A few days ago, the powers that be decided they needed to plug this hole. So instead of merely intercepting DNS requests to youtube.com, they implemented an indiscriminate IP address ban on all (known) addresses used by Google to serve up YouTube content. The problem with this is that Google uses those same addresses to serve up non-YouTube stuff like Google Docs, Google Sites (once banned, maybe still so), etc.

Result: very little Google goodness for the good people of Turkey. Way to go.

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