Tuesday, February 26, 2008
Pakistan's attempt to block access to YouTube
Pakistan did the most stupid thing while trying to block YouTube web site. Pakistanis wanted the YouTube connection requests to go nowhere so they created a dead-end (a black hole) where requests made to connect to YouTube would end up. Pakistan Telecom was connected to routers in Hong Kong, so Hong Kong thought (electronically--all of this was done electronically) that the route Pakistan Telecom was telling them (electronically) was the shortest/fastest way to connect to YouTube. Pretty soon the whole world was directing its traffic to YouTube to Pakistan Telecom (through Hong Kong) for faster connection to that web site. And of course Pakistan was terminating all this traffic in a black hole, which meant that a lot of people all over the world were not getting access to YouTube. [I believe creating a balckhole for an IP address gives the false impression of a very fast service because requests are handled right away. You can think of getting latte at Starbucks; if they really fulfill your order it would take them some time to satisfy you, but if they just push you in a black hole then it is super fast service. After pushing you in the black hole, they yell, 'Next' and the next person shows up, they push her too in the black hole, and are now on to the next customer. This line#1 is moving very fast, so people standing in line#2 at the next counter see that they would be served much faster in line#1; everybody starts queuing up in line #1, and everybody ends up in the same black hole.] But this game can only be played once. The world electronic community now realizes who is this jerk they need to watch out. Pakistan never misses a chance to lose its credibility to the world.