Last Updated on
When you read about the internet, it’s usually about how it’s constantly expanding and growing but that’s not strictly true. Although new information is being added all the time, the reality is that much of this is often inaccessible in particular when you’re looking at videos website.
For instance take the example of one of the world’s most popular websites the BBC iPlayer. Even if you remove page titles , it contains thousands of programmes, videos and radio broadcasts and indeed is updated every single day. It’s a wonderful resource which is continually refreshed, yet unfortunately the site is not accessible when you are located outside the United Kingdom unless you use something like a video proxy to help you. So why is so difficult to access these sites, why do people who happen to be away from home, perhaps in France Roubaix or a seaside town in Spain be constantly search for ways to unblock video pages on YouTube and the big media sites?
It’s an incredible situation, yet one that is becoming increasingly common – the internet is becoming compartmentalised, split into geographical sectors controlled by the internet’s big players. The method used is something called geo-blocking or locking and the majority of large web sites use it to some extent. You’ll find that a particular site will remove objects based on your location, in fact some countries it’s almost impossible to watch videos on any of the major platforms. Now the method has been criticised from all sorts of civil liberty organisations. Indeed the EU itself has made criticism which you can find here because it also undermines it’s concept of a Single Free Market.
The technology implemented varies slightly from site to site, yet it’s basically the same – record IP address and look up it’s location from a central database of addresses. So when you try and visit the BBC web site to watch a David Attenborough definition, if your IP address isn’t registered in the UK then you’ll get blocked.
It’s extremely frustrating especially for someone from the UK, and so the workarounds were created. Now I mentioned above the concept of a video proxy to bypass these and it does work to some extent. You bounce your connection off an intermediate proxy server based in the location you need, which effectively hides your true IP address and location and will unblock video sites easily
However it’s important to remember that from 2016 onwards simple proxies no longer work on any of the major media sites. Forget about the thousands of simply unblock sites or free video proxy server sites that promise to bypass internet restrictions, they simply don’t work anymore. Unfortunately without even simple ssl encrypted connections they can be detected easily and all the sites block them automatically. Some of them are still able to unblock Youtube videos but even those are fairly rare now. Many of them have been blocked at the server level and their hosting services have told them to remove scripts like Glype, Unfortunately the days of the free proxy sites and web proxies have now gone for good at least for being able to access videos sites and large multimedia companies who provide the top rated video production.
However the concept does still work just like the old video proxy method, it’s just you’ll need a securely configured VPN server which cannot be detected. The encryption is useful giving you the insurance of anonymity whilst able to allow cookies to flow down the connection transparently too. This works in the same way hiding your real address and instead presenting the address of the VPN server. So using this method, you can watch any media site from Hulu to Netflix and the BBC irrespective of your location. Unfortunately most simple proxies are now blocked so even the best free proxy sites are useless for accessing media sites like these.
Here’s one in action using a proxy to watch video content from the BBC –
It’s a highly sophisticated program that will allow you to proxy video through a secure connection, also fast enough to allow you to watch video without buffering. It’s very easy to use to unblock video and you’ll find it can bypass internet filters too which are also commonly implemented. The demo version is available to test it out, it won’t function as a YouTube proxy unfortunately but you can at least use the free version to unblock Facebook. The main program works on PCs and laptops but unlike simple unblock proxy sites you can use it as a video proxy mobile by establishing a VPN connection on your smartphone or tablet – it’s relatively simple to do. Check out a video of it in action switching IP addresses online on this page.
There is one other method, I should mention which you can find discussed in this article here, it’s called Smart DNS and is a simpler alternative to using a VPN service. If you want to scale things up you’re going to need access to a bigger network it’s worth reading this article about residential proxies as a start.
It’s what literally millions of people around the world are doing right now, relaxing in the sun whilst watching the News on the BBC or their favorite US entertainment channel. There are a lot of these services available now, but only a few that work properly. Our recommendation doesn’t look like a TV watching VPN at first glance simply because they keep that functionality low key. For proxy video streaming, speed is essential and that should be the first thing you assess. This one has been working for over a decade it has supported all the major media channels in a variety of countries.
It’s called Identity Cloaker – You can try their 10 day trial here – Identity Cloaker