Indication Of Blocked And Censored Pages – HTTP 451

451 Error Report

Recently, a new HTTP 451 error was codified which displayed the pages that are blocked and censored by the search engine. It is does not occur every day for a new HTTP error code to be introduced. In most cases there are certain limitations and some times it would be long enough before one can encounter a 451 error.

In this a code in introduced for showing a new standards, especially for the IETF (Internet Engineering Task Force) which can help in indicating which and how sites have been put down for legal reasons. In most of the cases, this is introduced as ‘HTTP Status Code to Report Legal Obstacles’ and the developers hope that the 451 error would bring about a new kind of transparency to the website that have been destroyed and blocked by law enforcement and government agencies.

So, in a certain way, this tool is nothing but an extension of the 403 (i.e. forbidden) error. However, it can provide a lot of information on why a given website is not accessible. In addition, a given 403 error will never give any kind of information on why a website is unable to get displayed but it would show the legal request that has been given by the host. According to the chair of IETF of the HTTP Working Group, Mr Mark Nottingham, a distinction should be present in the 403 error so that it can inform on why it is unable to display the legal reasons on why the website is blocked.

Certain basic standards are defined like it is important for the status code to indicate the server is blocking access to a given resources because of the legal demand. Also the server in question can be a fake server. So, in such situations the legal demand would simply affect the operations of the search engine as well as the ISP.

Furthermore, the response that are used for the status code needs to provide explanation about the response body, the entire information about the legal demands, the party who is making it, the regulations and applicable legislation and lastly what kind of class of individual and resources it is applicable to.


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