On this site there’s lots of little articles about internet privacy and bypassing all these stupid region blocks you find all over the web. I do actually get quite a few emails about people wanting to access different sites, usually because they’re expats or spend lots of time travelling. Often there some sort of local TV station, or perhaps a certain radio programme and even wanting to place bets with a online bookmaker. All these are the sort of sites that get blocked based on your location.
So the email I got was regarding a rather good online channel called M6 Replay which is one of the premiere TV stations in France. The email explained that the person was trying to access the site from the US where they were living for a year. This is what happened and they were wondering if a French proxy would help?
It’s the usual story, all major online TV channels restrict access to their domestic market – so anyone outside France would get this message or similar.
So a French Proxy allows Access to M6 Replay?
Unfortunately not, it used to work up until about three years ago you could find a French proxy online and stream M6 replay through it without problems. Now the era of the proxy as a useful circumvention tool is pretty much over – most websites are able to detect the presence of even a well configured proxy and block it automatically. The BBC was probably the last major broadcaster to allow the use of proxies but now you need a VPN for the BBC too.
A VPN is a virtual private network and is effectively a connection to a high, powered secure proxy server. The main advantage is that a connection from a VPN server is almost undetectable (although the Chinese have figured out how to stop some) and if the VPN server is in the right country it will work perfectly. So to watch M6 Replay from outside France you don’t need a French proxy – just one of these…
The program Identity Cloaker has lots of different servers all over the world which have lists of IP addresses by country. Therefore if you know the country you need, you just scroll down and click on the correct country. So for M6 Replay you’d pick France or for a Netherlands TV station you’d pick a Dutch VPN. Which of course would allocate you a Netherlands IP address for your internet connection while the VPN is enabled. It’s worth remembering that it actually effects everything you do online, including the version of Google you’ll end up using too.
As you can see, connecting through the French VPN gives you a French IP address and full access to the M6 Replay site. You can even subscribe to their premium membership through the VPN too and that will work as well. As you can see in the video the M6 Replay site only detects the IP address of the French VPN server and assumes that is your location. It’s very simple and works extremely well. In fact you can use the program to access all the major French TV sites which exist online, I know of many French Canadians who’ve been using this program for years. You can also of course access content in lots of different countries, for example choose a Canadian server to watch Canada only channels, a UK one for UK content and so on.
If you want to Give it a Try and watch M6 Replay from Anywhere