Human Rights,  Iran

Harry’s Place: still banned in Iran

Over the years, we’ve been informed that the official Internet firewall of the Islamic Republic of Iran filters out Harry’s Place.

I think I speak for everyone at HP when I say it’s a point of pride that someone in that thuggish regime has considered our humble blog dangerous (or at least annoying) enough to ban.

(On the other hand the Chinese authorities haven’t blocked us yet— which suggests we should be doing more to piss them off.)

As I understand it, Iranian Internet users play a constant cat-and-mouse game with the authorities, finding new ways to get around the firewall as old ways are blocked.

Anyway, according to this useful feature at viewdns.info, we are still being filtered out.

Thenextweb.com reports:

The latest figures from ViewDNS underline the poor state of access to the internet for citizens in Iran. The country is second only to Israel for the percentage of the population with Internet access in the Middle East, but strict moral values and a watchful eye over access to dissent or criticism means that around 27% of all internet sites are blocked.

ViewDNS took the top 100 sites in each category as listed in Alexa’s ‘Top Sites’ directory and tested access to these sites from an Internet connection in the Islamic Republic of Iran.

From the topic scope of websites that are blocked, it is not surprising that adult sites and the arts lead the way. Many, but not all sites of this nature are likely to conflict with Iran’s moral code.

In the news sector 32% of the world’s top news sites are blocked. Currently, BBC News, The Guardian, Fox News, The Huffington Post and the New York Post sites are blocked, but interestingly CNN, Reuters, The New York Times and Bloomberg are still accessible.

Harry’s Place has been accused of many things, but not (as far as I know) endangering moral values. So I’ll have to assume we’re being blocked for political reasons.

You can find out which other websites are blocked or viewable in Iran here. Feel free to share your findings in the comments.

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