Internet Engineers approve Code [Fahrenheit] 451 for censorship denial of service

The Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF) has approved the use of HTTP status code 451.

The code alerts readers when a page has been blocked for legal reasons or censored.

The code number was inspired by Fahrenheit 451, Ray Bradbury’s novel about censorship.

From Fast Company:

Code 451 is a big step for transparency, but since it’s optional, it probably won’t be a final solution. As Bray tells The Verge, “It is imaginable that certain legal authorities may wish to avoid transparency, and not only forbid access to certain resources, but also disclosure that the restriction exists.”

Others will righteously flaunt it.

In Wired, K. G. Orphanides reports

In The Next Web, Owen Williams reports

At Vice’s Motherboard, Michael Byrne reports

Reality check: So the error code for censorship is now an Internet standard. At least in some cases we will know. Most people will go along to get along and imagine that only bad people will wonder why, unless it interferes with booze, drugs, sex, porn or pizzas or something related.

See also: Now Chappaquiddick to be sanitized via new film (Will correct version be censored?)

Hat tip: Book and Periodicals Council of Canada Freedom of Expression Committee

  • Alain

    I am fast coming to the sad conclusion that few people in Western countries even understand the meaning, much less the importance, of liberty and freedom.

  • AlanUK

    451 deg F – the temperature at which paper spontaneously combusts in air (supposedly). The powers that be destroy every book they can find.
    The book is well worth a read before it, itself, is eliminated.

  • APL

    Actually, according to the author himself, Fahrenheit 451 has nothing to do with government censorship.