e-Governance

Plans for country-specific content filtering from Google

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Barely a week after a similar initiative by Twitter, the popular micro-blogging site, Google has unveiled new plans for making content on its blogger platform selectively available. Now censorship of the content posted on Blogger will depend on the local rules of each country.

The new system means blocking will not require restricting world-wide access to a blog. As of now the changes are applicable only in Australia, New Zealand and India, but it is understood that Google plans to roll out similar system globally.

Google’s decision to impose limited amount of censorship on the web comes in wake of a raging debate over moves by many countries, including India, to enforce regulations on the internet.

A blog reader on Blogger will henceforth be directed to a website address using a “country-code top level domain”. For instance, for users based in Australia, Blogger’s servers will automatically direct them to blogname.blogspot.com.in.

“If you visit a blog that does not correspond to your current location as determined by your IP address, the blogspot servers will redirect you to the domain associated with your country,” Google said in a Q&A the company posted about the changes.

Google believes this will allow it to comply with local law enforcement requests, while keeping content available in other jurisdictions. Additionally users will also able to tell Google to direct them to a different country web address by adding “/ncr” – ncr stands for “No Country Redirect”.

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