ISPs block websites, Anonymous comes knocking

Airtel has now followed Reliance Communications in blocking torrent websites, video sharing websites Vimeo and DailyMotion.

The Internet Service Providers (ISPs) in India are currently blocking websites in accordance to a Supreme Court directive. As of now Reliance Communications and Airtel are blocking The Pirate Bay, Vimeo, DailyMotion and a few other torrent sites across parts of India. The note users in India subscribed to the Internet through these ISPs are seeing is:

Access to this site has been blocked as per Court Orders

The reason behind this censorship is a John Doe order obtained by film distributor Relance Entertainment. Citing piracy concerns ahead of blockbuster releases, Reliance Entertainment has been using John Doe orders to get websites blocked. Since Reliance Entertainment and Reliance Communications are under the same leadership, the companies worked together in restricting access to the websites. Speaking to, Reliance Entertainment's VP for anti-piracy said, "Our primary contention is that the copyright of our films should be protected, and that they should not be available for viewing or downloading on sites. But for Dangerous Ishhq, only our own affiliate will block the sites. We are not saying that the entire site should be blocked. Other ISPs should ensure that they block the availability of our films, not the entire site."

As Airtel users started getting affected, infamous hacktivist group Anonymous decided to retaliate. The hacktivist group called for supporters to target websites of the Supreme Court of India, Ministry of Communications and Information Technology,, and All India Congress Committee (AICC). As of writing this only AICC is down. The attack is a Distributed Denial of Service Attack (DDoS) whereby the website is so inundated by visitors that it crashes. The official Twitter page for the co-ordinated DDoS @opindia_revenge seems to have backed down and are desperately trying to explain Indians that their actions do not harm the websites but only cause some downtime. Some updates from the group:

This is the second time Anonymous members have tried to take down websites in India and like last time, their actions won't achieve more than a few news headlines.

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