A new error code has been introduced that will prevent content that is restricted by governments in various countries to be restricted.
On Friday, a group responsible for Internet Standards the Internet Engineering Steering Group (IESG), approved a new HTTP code that will differentiate between sites that aren’t available due to technical reasons and others which are restricted by the government or other various censorship reasons.
Status codes are most met when something goes wrong.. either its a server is down, a page is not responding or its a user only site. The common 404 error tells a user a page has not been found. The new code is 451 which will be specific to government restrictions and censorship.
As explained by Mark Nottingham, chair of the IETF working group that first looked at the idea, having a specific status code for censorship could prove useful in some ways. It will now be easier to find how many blog posts or videos get taken offline for non-technical reasons and will be easier to check the point of issue when it comes to censorship.