AT&T declares war on the Internet

AT&T has started blocking access to, which means access to the 4chan imageboards /b/ and /r9k/ are unavailable to most (not all) AT&T customers. An article on the wiki Encyclopedia Dramatica has details:

-Most AT&T DSL (largest ISP in the US, 15.5% of US Internet users) customers ARE currently not able to access (/b/ & /r9k/)

-There are a few AT&T DSL users that are NOT affected. Florida, and Ohio are where we’ve gotten those reports. (Parts of Georgia are still alright as well.) AT&T is a megacorp made from the smaller pieces it was broken down into in the 80s- different equipment and such.

-AT&T Mobility (Cell Phones) and AT&T Uverse customers ARE NOT AFFECTED.(Lie, Uverse is blocking it also)

-It IS NOT a DNS issue. Affected people have tried OpenDNS with no success.

-It IS very visible on a traceroute. It drops within the AT&T network.

-It DOES NOT affect AT&Ts Tier 1 backbone (major bandwidth backbone in US).

-It DOES NOT affect other servers on 4chan.

-People HAVE called customer service (allegedly) and confirmed a block, but agents have denied further info.

Near as I can tell, multiple customer service agents have confirmed that this is intentional, and not a bug or an accident. The ED article seems to be updated regularly. The story has also been covered on Reddit, with a very active discussion.

The apparent reason for this was to alleviate bandwidth costs on the part of AT&T due to a DDoS attack against 4chan. As far as I know, ISPs have the right to throttle connections, but not to arbitrarily block a connection like this. It appears that AT&T is breaking the law.

Of all the sites AT&T could have chosen to filter, 4chan is probably the one that’ll put up the biggest fight. Part of me is looking forward to watching what happens next. Don’t get me wrong, though; censorship is serious business. Something needs to be done.

EDIT (11:50pm, Jul 26): AT&T has begun to allow access to 4chan again.

About probabilityZero

I'm a rather boring, geeky college student. Most of my time is spent at a computer, reading a book, or sitting in (mostly uninteresting) classes. My hobbies include reading, blogging, creating and running websites, creating amateur video games, arguing incessantly on discussion forums, and buying books on because I'm too lazy to go to the library.
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2 Responses to AT&T declares war on the Internet

  1. ANONYMOUS says:

    The ban is reportedly being lifted. They backed off pretty quick.

    Reports are that this whole shitstorm was due to a DDoS attack costing AT&T money. They figured censoring a private website was justified in order to save themselves some moolah.

  2. ace says:

    And once again, it NEVER fails with the incessant lying, as lying is a way of life for these hacker creeps. I salute AT&T for blocking viruses, trojans and nasty spider scripts, as that is what the REAL truth is as to WHY AT&T has flashed the middle finger [blocked] to 4 Chan. Why should AT&T waste time and energy in dealing with viruses, trojans and uncontrollable script programs emanating from the 4 Chan site?

    I don’t condone censorship and I certainly don’t condone lies “in the name of lulz”. The only thing 4 Chan has proven again and again, is that they are infantile and violent. A bunch of two year olds who go on tirades. And just like an out of control two year old, they need some REAL hard slaps from the school of hard knocks.

    Any consequences or denial of internet access to AT&T customers due to NAZI actions emanating from 4 Chan [or any other hacker creeps for that matter], I pray that they are caught, rounded up, prosecuted beyond the extent of the law, thrown in a windowless cell and locked up forever until the day they die.

    I commend AT&T for taking the step forward and I sincerely hope that other ISP’S follow suit ASAP. ENOUGH IS ENOUGH. Hackers cause destruction, chaos, waste everyones time and energy. Normal people on the net are SICK AND TIRED of these two year old tantrum antics that 4 Chan displays on a daily basis. These hacker creeps really and truly need to GROW THE F*** UP.

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