IPC is trying to destroy the .net domain

Published: May 2011 by Mr Reposter

The Intellectual Property Constituency is a self-interest group who is trying to change the rules that govern the registration of .net domain names. These industry shills are just a mouthpiece for big-business’ dodgy website take-downs based on intellectual property claims. They are attempting to change the rules for .net domains so that the whois information for every .net site is an actual representative of the site itself, not the contact details of the hosting company, or 3rd party privacy protection company as is present situation.

Their request, beyond being illegal because of the perversion of user privacy and free speech, is inappropriate as the current system works perfectly well in cases where sites promote infringing content. If a site contains infringing material, the rights holder merely has to email the address listed in the whois information with details of the infringement. If the website host deems the content to be infringing, the user will be contacted to provide proof of legal ownership or the content will be removed. If serious infringements have been made the law already has provisions whereby the website host must provide details of the domain registrant to the appropriate authorities.

The IPC is basically pushing for rules that would allow them, their agents or any random person who knows about whois look-ups to find the contact address of a person related to the site. This is incredibly immoral as such listings could lead to violence or threats of violence being leveled at website owners by people who disagree with the position of the site owner. This is incredibly unfair as it restricts people’s access to tools which allow free speech, punishes thousands of innocent .net domain owners by grouping us with those who break the rules. Finally, it is asinine because it will not add any additional protection abilities to intellectual property… it will just make the job of copyright trolls taking down legitimate sites too easy.

Here is the full email I sent to icann (based on this one by Cory Doctorow)

An excerpt:
If these changes are made I will be permanently shutting down the site
that I have spent untold hours ensuring respects copyright (all content
used is CC licensed and appropriately attributed) because there is no way,
under any circumstances, that I would allow my home address to be
published in relation to my site. IT WOULD PUT MY OWN LIFE AT RISK AS I AM
HIGHLY CRITICAL OF VIOLENT, REPRESSIVE & IGNORANT GROUPS:

See these pages for some examples:
http://www.reposter.net/2010/11/al-qaeda-in-the-arabian-peninsula-needs-a-graphic-designer-badly/
http://www.reposter.net/2011/05/good-shot-nato-bomb-saif-al-arab-gaddafi/
http://www.reposter.net/2011/04/free-maikel-nabil-sanad/
http://www.reposter.net/2011/04/climate-change-skeptics-are-nothing-but-loud-ignorant-rednecks/

If I am forced to close my site because of privacy concerns, IPC will have made a new enemy and turned someone who has worked hard to ensure his website does not infringe copyright into someone that will actively seek to infringe copyrights of those represented by IPC.

I have the knowledge and ability to infringe copyright without any chance of being caught yet I choose not to use it. It would be a shame if icann caves to IPC’s selfish demands and turns yet another legitimate netizen to the dark side in retribution.

[Title image courtesy of Flickr user 917press via CC license]

Filed under: activism, copyfight, help!, human rights, journalism, legal

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