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Jio and Hathway blocking Reddit in some cities, working in others

Jio mobile and GigaFiber, and Hathway have been blocking Reddit on its broadband and mobile network for the last 6-8 days, some Reddit users have reported. This block seems inconsistent since other Reddit users are reporting that Reddit is working on their Jio connections.

If you are a Reddit user and on Jio’s or Hathway’s cellular and/or broadband service, please email us in case you have faced any blockage issues at sneha@medianama.com.

One Reddit user reported the app working okay but not the mobile website. There is also a list of threads discussing the blocking of Reddit here. A few users have reported that Reddit is back on Hathway. Some reported that changing the DNS let Jio users browse Reddit.

According to these threads, Reddit is working on:

  • Assam Jio 4G
  • Ahmedabad Jio 4G
  • Mumbai Jio 4G
  • Madurai (unspecified service provider)

VPN, torrents and sites blocked by ISPs and CSPs

About a month ago, we had reported that Internet users across India were reporting instances of their telecom provider or ISP blocking websites, torrents, VPN services and Telegram (web), over a 2-week period, according to a crowdsourced document created by the Internet Freedom Foundation (IFF). IFF said that these users were spread across metros as well as smaller cities.

At the time, IFF’s report found that:

  • Mobile internet users reporting the most blocks: Reliance Jio and Airtel were top CSPs, while ACT Fibernet, BSNL, Vodafone and Hathway were mentioned
  • Jio mostly blocked the proxies and VPN services

This is not the first time that service providers have blocked websites without an explanation. In October last year, Indian Express’ domain was blocked across Airtel and Vodafone networks for a day without warning. In August 2017, India blocked access to the Internet Archive (also known as the Wayback Machine) on Airtel (Delhi, mobile) and MTNL (Delhi, wireline) connections.

4x increase in website blocks

Note that in December, MeitY told the parliament that 2,388 URLs were blocked in 2018 under Section 69A of the IT Act. The total number of websites and webpages blocked have gone up by four times in the last four years.

URLs blocked

  • 2015: 587 blocked
  • 2016: 964 blocked
  • 2017: 1,329 blocked
  • 2018: 2,388 blocked

Read about India, Nepal and Bangladesh’s porn bans.

Disclaimer: MediaNama Founder and Editor Nikhil Pahwa was part of the founding team of the IFF.

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