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US Flag Stop Sign US websites are stopping UK users from entering. Photo © Emilio Labrador

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US Websites Block UK Users
As GDPR comes into effect, US Websites are blocking users in the UK and EU
Published on May 25, 2018

New regulations protecting data in the European Union came into effect today (May 25). GDPR, or the General Data Protection Regulation, is tightening privacy laws across the EU, with a particular emphasis on the security and safeguarding of users data. Everything from e-mail newsletter subscriptions to the collection of cookies from web users are being affected by the changes, but one perhaps unforseen consequence is that, in the short term at least, GDPR is going to give Americans in the UK a headache if they want to find out news from back home.

That's because a number of US websites have simply blocked EU users, including those from the UK, from accessing their content. Websites for newspapers including the Chicago Tribune, the Los Angeles Times, the New York Daily News and others are now simply showing messages advising that their content is, for the time being, unavailable to users in the European Union. As it happens, these newspapers are all owned by Tronc, Inc - whose own website, at the time of writing, is working fine and includes links to articles from these newspapers (http://www.tronc.com/).

Other US media websites, such as The Boston Globe, are available to view from Europe, but UK users need to navigate a Consent form and privacy notice to be able to access articles.

The hope would be that these reductions in services for EU and UK users are temporary, but as the world comes to terms with GDPR regulations, and as the US walks the thin line on Net Neutrality, it'll be as important as ever for websites on both sides of the Atlantic to ensure that content is accessible world wide. As you might imagine, from The American's perspective, this is doubly important for US Citizens in the UK who rely upon US websites for news, services and access to other essential products that they require.

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