The name of this website comes from a book called “Fahrenheit 451”, where firemen spend their time burning books instead of putting out fires. The writer of that book died in June 2012. His name was Ray Bradbury.
Ray Bradbury is quoted as being a man who – through his writings – tried to prevent the future. This post from Mashable on the occasion of Bradbury’s recent passing just highlights such an appreciation:
[…] When Yahoo approached him in 2009 about publishing a book through its properties, Bradbury reacted violently.
“You know what I told them? ‘To hell with you. To hell with you and to hell with the Internet. It’s distracting,” he recalled in an interview with The New York Times that Yahoo declined to verify. “It’s meaningless; it’s not real. It’s in the air somewhere,” he added.
Yet the thesis of one of Bradbury’s most iconic works – the novel “Fahrenheit 451” – is just as applicable to a digital age in which countries and governments attempt to control not only the movement but also (perhaps more importantly) the persistence of online information, as it ever was to the world of books: a world which he so clearly treasured and valued.
And as this site’s original tagline underlined, if you don’t like people burning books, films and music (in both literal and technological senses of the verb), why do you think the solution lies in burning the Internet – a medium which a vast part of modern connected society uses to read, watch and listen to the planet we inhabit?
Think about it.
Choose to be coherent.
There are already a host of HTTP status codes, from the common 404 Not Found to 504 Gateway Timeout. The 451 idea follows a blogpost from Terence Eden, who found that his ISP had been ordered to censor the Pirate Bay when he was given an HTTP 403 Forbidden message, meaning that “the server understood the request, but is refusing to fulfil it”. In fact, Eden writes on his blog, it was not Pirate Bay that was preventing access but the government, after Britain’s high court issued an order to ISPs to block access to the filesharing site in April, so the response was “factually incorrect”, and a new code is needed to indicate “censorship”.
451, Bray believes, would work nicely, as it would provide a tribute to Bradbury as well as reminding users of the dystopian future predicted by the science fiction author. […]