Tuesday, September 9, 2008


Websense has dropped public access to their website lookup tool.

Yes, I correct Wikipedia articles. I also submit corrections to internet censorship companies like Websense and the now defunct SurfControl (who recently bought by Websense in 2007). Some of my favorites corrections have been the censorship of official Adobe Product Help Forums and various sites which provided educational materials (like blank sheet music) or reference materials (say information about coin collecting and starting your own coin collection).

Last week I received this dandy notification from Websense in my In-box (shortened version follows):

During a recent upgrade to MyWebsense, we have implemented steps which increase the accuracy of our customer information. This allows us to better meet our customers' support needs.

Unfortunately, your MyWebsense account is missing some key information and is no longer active.

To re-initiate your account, please visit http://www.websense.com/supportportal/ .
By providing this information, we will be able to provide you with more focused support offerings, improved ability to create support cases via our online portal, and online forums, to be released in the near future, which will enable you to interact with other customers to resolve issues.

We apologize for any inconvenience.
(Blow yourself),
Websense Technical Support

Okay, I added the "Blow yourself" at the end. But the long and short is the new required information is the Activation Key for their product, which will only be available to the Information Technology (IT) professionals which installed the software and not to the millions of users effected by the technology in public school systems and libraries, on high traffic machines in hospitals and private universities or government workers across the globe. Not to mention independent website providers and bloggers who can no longer look-up how their own websites are categorized by Websense and request changes to (their often inaccurate) categorizations.


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