June 13, 2012 | Peter Bradwell

Update on reported BT block of Black Triangle campaign website

Earlier this week TechWeekly reported the campaign group Black Triangle had complained that their site was being blocked by BT. From the TechWeekly piece:

"...for almost six months now the website has been blocked by BT alongside extreme pornography and political extremism.

The only way for BT customers to access the website is through TOR or proxy servers. The group claims this has been extremely damaging to its campaigning and fundraising efforts."

We asked BT about this and having looked into it, they have told us they can't find any evidence of a block or issue. Here's their statement:

"BT has never placed any block on this site.

In fact, when the issue was raised we found it difficult to find any BT customer that could not access it.

After significant discussion with the Black Triangle Campaign's representative and extensive technical analysis we have as yet been unable to find any technical issue on the BT network preventing access to this site.

We have asked Black Triangle for permission to speak its site hosts in Iceland to establish the cause of this issue."

We've asked Black Triangle whether they're still experiencing the problem and their take on what's happening.

It can be difficult to work out exactly what is happening and why with reports of website blocking. If you're on BT, drop us a note below to let us know if you are experiencing a problem.

You can read our report on mobile Internet censorship, where we write about evidence of a lot of mistaken blocking on mobile networks' child protection filters, here.

Update 14:50 June 13: We asked on Twitter for BT broadband users to check if they could access the site. It certainly seems like there are plenty of people who are struggling to access it. Here are some of the replies:

  • "@leydon @PatrickSocha @OpenRightsGroup Not working here and we're with Exponential E."
  • "@PatrickSocha: Anyone on BT able to access http://blacktrianglecampaign.org ? @OpenRightsGroup claiming it's down and it's not working for me.
  • "@MrLadoodle:  @PatrickSocha @openrightsgroup Not working here."
  • "@hatross: @OpenRightsGroup no. Can't connect"
  • "@techypaul: @OpenRightsGroup BT is blocking (no message, just hangs). IDNET is fine (we have fail over so tried both)."
  • "@smiggers: @OpenRightsGroup I too get a timeout. On BT Broadband not Infinity. Ping seems to work though."
  • "@andrew2186: @OpenRightsGroup I get the same timing out error as the one you RT'ed, and yet the website seems to be working fine: http://web-sniffer.net/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fblacktrianglecampaign.org%2F&http=1.1"
  • "@mobilizingmouse: @OpenRightsGroup Can't access via Bt broadband here in Herts."
  • "@aliguana: @OpenRightsGroup nope "Chrome could not connect to http://Blacktriangecampaign.org" -try loading cached copy gives 404 #bt"
  • "@guy_herbert: @OpenRightsGroup I'm on @BT and get "Error 118 (net::ERR_CONNECTION_TIMED_OUT): The operation timed out."

Comments (11)

  1. Cedric:
    Jun 13, 2012 at 11:15 PM

    BT may be right in this case. It could be a routing problem, or maybe BT is filtered by the administrator in Iceland ("1984") for reasons such as form spam. Geek BT users (if there are any) might want to compare "traceroute -T -p 80 blacktrianglecampaign.org" with "traceroute blacktrianglecampaign.org" to see if there is any intermediate filtering. For comparison, I get siminn-linx-gw-1.isholf.is, *,, IPnet-gw., (for port 80) / * (default UDP). Possibly a hardware firewall at the host.

  2. gareth:
    Jun 14, 2012 at 10:40 PM

    I cannot access any BT links from my BT broadband home connection!

  3. John McArdle Black Triangle Campaign:
    Jun 15, 2012 at 08:23 AM

    We're getting the BT engineer to liaise directly with our hosting company in Iceland. We want to thank everyone here for their continued help and support. All we know is that all our supporters who do not use BT can access our website just fine. We're not able to say who or what is at fault but we need to get this matter resolved or our ability to do our job - campaigning against government misinformation surrounding disabled people and benefits, AtoS Healthcare Ltd. and the swarming corporate vultures such as AtoS, G4S and Serco who are lining up to filch the most vulnerable people in our society's disability benefits through the new 'Personal Independence Payment' that Osborne has already said will "save" 20% of the social security budget. This IT problem has been a huge headache for us - and if it hadn't been for the help of all you techies out there - it would continue to be a full-blown migraine for us. Thank You ALL! Solidarity! John McArdle on behalf of Black Triangle Anti-Defamation Campaign in Defence of Disability Rights

  4. g ward:
    Jun 16, 2012 at 12:44 AM

    BT are telling porkies i am a customer who complained mths ago about this

  5. John McGovern:
    Jun 16, 2012 at 08:11 AM

    I experience problems accessing Blacktriangle.

    John McGovern

  6. E. Hall:
    Jun 16, 2012 at 08:36 AM

    I haven't been able to access the Black Triangle website from my BT home connection for ages but I was able to using a dongle (not BT). I do think they know very well why there is a 'problem'

    Jun 18, 2012 at 01:21 AM

    I have never been able to access and am a BT customer.

  8. R Skye:
    Jun 25, 2012 at 10:00 PM

    I have had no problem accessing it until the 21st...I switched over to BT then.

  9. I Jarvis:
    Jun 27, 2012 at 08:42 PM

    Another BT customer here, have tried endless times to access the black triangle website to no avail.

  10. suzie clemas-howard:
    Jun 28, 2012 at 12:30 PM

    the Black Triangle Campaign website. I have never asked BT to be the guardian of my morals, or my principles, nor do I need them to be. It is my right to determine what I read, see and say.

  11. casimira mostyn:
    Jun 29, 2012 at 02:01 PM

    I am with BT and have never been able to log into the blacktriangle website, very frustrating