Private companies are continuing to play with what millions of internet users in India can and cannot see. Last week, several BitTorrent sites along with other stranger choices like Vimeo were blocked by at least one ISP. Now, others are joining, though the original block has been lifted in some cases.There's also no country wide block as sites may work on one ISP in one region but won't work in another.
Blocking websites is unfortunately common in many parts of the world. In the US, the government can snatch domain names of any site it wants, keep it in the dark for a year, then give it back with no repercussions.
The practice is becoming common in India as well, especially before a big movie release. Several BitTorrent sites are now blocked by some ISPs, including The Pirate Bay, Torrentz, IsoHunt and several other popular ones.
But Vimeo and DailyMotion, both popular and legal video sites are blocked as well. Most of the videos you'll find on these sites, virtually all the videos on Vimeo, are shared legally.
Even stranger, Pastebin is blocked as well. The site is sometimes used by hackers to post email addresses and passwords from compromised sites as well as other such data, but that's hardly reason enough to have it blocked altogether.
Where it doesn't make sense at all is at Xmarks, the bookmark sync service. There doesn't seem to be any logical reason to block this site for fear of piracy or anything else, all it does is enable users to access their bookmarks wherever they are.
It's hard to confirm whether any of these sites are blocked and where, but the reports do indicate a concerted effort. A fruitless one if the goal is to stop piracy, even if it's just one movie, but it will be a while before the movie industry, in any country, will figure this out.