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http status code for site blocked

From: Tex Texin <tex@i18nguy.com>
Date: Wed, 04 Dec 2002 12:06:44 -0500
Message-ID: <3DEE3624.49C475FB@i18nguy.com>
To: WWW International <www-international@w3.org>

I am currently in China trying to access my own site XenCraft and I am
getting 404 page not found.
At first I thought my server might be down. I suspect however, that the
site is blocked for some reason by Chinese government.
I note that I can also not retrieved the cached image from google.

This is all speculative for me at the moment, but assuming it is in fact
blocked, it would be nice to have a status code for this other than page
not found. For one, it would save me time investigating problems that do
not exist. For another, I imagine that it must be very frustrating to
come upon pages with links and if the link doesn't work always wondering
whether it is worth coming back at another time in case it was server
down or some other momentary problem rather than a long term issue like
blocking.

1) Would proposing a status code for "access denied by local government"
make sense? 

2) Also, is there a way to look up which sites are blocked by China, or
more generally by any government?
(I imagine there are people making investments in promoting sites that
cannot in fact be accessed.)

3) Is there a procedure/protocol/process for becoming unblocked?

I don't want to address the political issues around this. I think it is
important for the web to distinguish when a page is blocked vs. other
causes, and for there to be a way to know which pages are blocked.

(Due to travel I may not be able to reply to messages for a while.)

tex
-- 
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Tex Texin   cell: +1 781 789 1898   mailto:Tex@XenCraft.com
Xen Master                          http://www.i18nGuy.com
                         
XenCraft		            http://www.XenCraft.com
Making e-Business Work Around the World
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Received on Wednesday, 4 December 2002 12:07:11 GMT

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