geert lovink on Tue, 15 May 2001 08:51:56 +0200 (CEST)

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<nettime> freedom to surf

[more and more so-cald cool internet corporations are forcing users to go to
a specific site, redirecting them to a closeby service, thereby restricting
their own choice, for example NOT to visit silly services in their beloved
mother/father country. this is one example from altavista/australia, taken
from the link-list. geert]

-----Original Message-----
From: Bob Bain []
Sent: Tuesday, 15 May 2001 8:36
To: Link mailing list
Subject: Re: [LINK] AltaVista forces Australian site on Oz users

On Mon, 14 May 2001 23:51:10 +0930, Brenda wrote:

>Robin Whittle wrote:

>> If I, at, access:

>>   or

>> or anything under that, the rotten thing directs me to an Australian
>> site:

>I dont seem to be so constrained robin for  Sure
>its not your ISP?

 If so it must be mine as well....

 I find that I'm directed to an Australian site

 Searching on "altavista" from this site reveals that there are various
country alternatives that take one to regionalised altavista search

   eg:  Germany
               http:/    United Kingdom

 These sites are also listed as links at the bottom of the page.

 If one clicks on "United States" one is taken to



Bob Bain. Sydney Australia


Yeah. Complained to AltaVista and got the usual "provide a better
experience" guff in reply. I don't want an experience, I want information;
and, agreeing with all others on Link, if AltaVista coerces me into an
experience, then I go somewhere else.

Richard Chirgwin

AltaVista's reply:

Subject: Re: Contact Us email from AltaVista. -    Australia

Dear Richard Chirgwin,

Thank you for choosing AltaVista. Thanks for your mail.
AltaVista has created country specific web sites to provide a better search
experience to our visitors from outside the US and is one
of these sites.  From the Australian site you :
    have access to a local index of almost 10 million Australian pages  ?
which is  not available from
    can search the whole of the index found on .com ? some 550 million
pages ? just select 'the world wide web' as your search option under the
search box
    can customize your search results ? save them, e-mail them to friends
or colleagues, and track where you've searched.
For the time being, we will continue to redirect you to the Australian site
when you visit  If you need to visit the US site, just click
on the 'go to US site' link on the top right of the Australian site.

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