Microsoft's 'Threat Management Gateway' Blocks Free Software Foundation Donation Page As 'Gambling'

from the well,-for-microsoft-maybe dept

Via Slashdot, we learn that Microsoft's "Threat Management Gateway" (which some companies apparently use to protect against malicious websites) has classified the website for donations to the Free Software Foundation as "gambling," meaning that it's blocked for many users. This was first discovered by a user on Reddit who received the following notice:
The page you are trying to browse to is categorized as "Gambling"

If you believe you are getting this message by mistake, try contacting your administrator or Helpdesk.

Technical Information (for support personnel)

Error Code: 403 Forbidden. Forefront TMG denied the specified Uniform Resource Locator (URL). (12233)
IP Address: [IP Redacted]
Date: 6/14/2012 6:31:39 PM [GMT]
Server: [server name redacted]
Source: proxy
You can confirm this at Microsoft's site if you type donate.fsf.org in the box. Currently, it shows the following:

What's amazing is the regular FSF page just shows "Technical Information" and "Shareware/Freeware." So it seems that the "Gambling" designation was just added to the donate page. Amazingly, the Reddit user noticed this nearly two weeks ago, and as I type this it's still showing up classified as gambling, though FSF has put in a request to change it.

Reader Comments

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  1. icon
    Josh in CharlotteNC (profile), 25 Jun 2012 @ 6:17am

    The party line

    This is just one Microsoft product sticking to the party line.

    Microsoft has been claiming for years that using open source software, such as Linux, is a gamble - a gamble of being sued for patent infringement. And Microsoft should know - they're the ones that claim (although will never show evidence) that they have (ridiculously over-broad) patents (on obvious ideas).

    So of course they're labeling FSF's website as falling into the gambling category.

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