Last week, I was on the telephone with a stockbroker discussing a tax question one of her clients had raised. I told her that I had discussed a similar question on my weblog and gave her the URL. She tried to get to the weblog via the brokerage firm's internet connection and was told that the site was blocked and not accessible from that computer.
My guess is that I am neither so famous nor so notorious that the computer actually singled me out. Rather, I think that the brokerage house programmed its internet access to block all websites operated by Blogger not merely selected sites. It would not surprise me if the computer were somehow programmed to block weblogs that use any of the larger weblog hosting services (e.g., Blogger, Typepad, etc.).
If would appreciate it if anyone could send me information as to (i) whether this is a common practice among brokerage companies, (ii) whether the block is applied only to weblogs using the larger weblog hosting services, (iii) how the personnel of the brokerage company can get around the block, or (iv) any other pertinent information.
I understand that the People's Republic of China and Saudi Arabia block websites that they find offensive, but I would have thought that the stock brokerage houses, being champions of the free market, would not try to impede the free market of ideas.