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Wobbly Web Filters: Sanford Health Blocks Blogs at Random?

A traveling correspondent checks in from Sanford Health in Sioux Falls with an odd Web filter note. Clicking around the South Dakota blogosphere, my correspondent logs into a computer in the Sanford lobby... and discovers the following sites blocked by the corporate filter:

Now I can understand protecting sensitive patients from Sibby's obsessive paranoia, but Bob Mercer? Doug Wiken? Stan Adelstein? I'd think Sanford would love to have its customers read Senator Adelstein's support for expanding Medicaid.

But don't go looking for logic in Web filters. Here are some blogs my correspondent found breaking through the Sanford quarantine:

Sanford Health's web filter certainly isn't viewpoint-sensitive. I've ridden their corporate backsides, and they let me through. It's hard to tell from that list what keywords form the basis of that filter's algorithm. Larry Kurtz and Bob Newland use saltier language than I or any of the authors on Sanford's block list on a regular basis, yet they slip right through the filter.

Meanwhile, in the midst of a French geography lesson yesterday, I tried to Google "1943 map Europe Nazi Germany" to show students the extent of Hitler's wartime conquests. The Spearfish High School filter blocked that search, deeming it inappropriate. I had to drop "Nazi" to get it through the filter.


  1. Winston 2013.04.17

    What about Minnesota Public Television? Can Sanford patients in South Dakota still access that channel?

  2. charlie5150 2013.04.17

    Wow, I had never looked at Sibby Online before. That is a bizzare, unhealthy obsession he has with Cory. Hope the man gets some help.

  3. Douglas Wiken 2013.04.17

    Woulda thunk it a filter that dumps Sibson and Wiken with equal fervor. I wonder if Dakota Today and Sibby Online have been around long enough to be caught and maybe The rest of the SD blogosphere will get snagged. But, then again, Mercer's blog is not all that old. Who knows what goes through the brains of censors ...electronic or otherwise.

  4. caheidelberger Post author | 2013.04.17

    I'm not convinced the filter would be time-sensitive. DWC and NVB have been around for some time.

  5. interested party 2013.12.16

    It's time for Governor Daugaard to pardon Bob Newland.

  6. grudznick 2013.12.16

    Bob wouldn't accept it, Larry. He'd wear his hat indoors and tear up the pardon. Bob won't be happy until he's pardoned by a Libertarian Governor, like Governor Kaiser.

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