Feb 26, 2008 : Pakistan Causes YouTube Blackout

February 26, 2008 - Popular video hosting website YouTube (http://www.youtube.com) was down for several hours on Sunday after an attempt by Pakistan's government to restrict local access to the site domestically affected other countries.

In a statement released by YouTube on Monday, many users around the world could not access the website for about two hours because traffic had been routed according to erroneous Internet protocols.

According to reports, Pakistan ordered local Internet service providers to block access to the website because it was running material insulting to Islam. However, a government telecommunications official said there was no intention to block the website worldwide. The order has now been lifted after YouTube removed the content deemed insulting to Islam.

The authority had earlier justified its order to block access in Pakistan saying it was necessary to avoid unrest in the predominantly Muslim country of 160 million people and that the video content had the potential to cause more possible loss of life and property across the country.

Internet monitoring firm Renesys says the block extended over two-thirds of the global Internet population, with the greatest affect seen in Asia where the outage lasted for up to two hours.

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