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Continuing the Distributed DNS System

timothy posted more than 2 years ago | from the labor-of-love dept.

Networking 77

bs0d3 writes "Last year, piratebay co-founder Peter Sunde gathered coders to begin a decentralized dns system. This is a direct result of the increasing control which the US government has over ICANN. The project is called P2P-DNS and according to the project's wiki, this is how the project is described: 'P2P-DNS is a community project that will free internet users from imperial control of DNS by ICANN. In order to prevent unjust prosecution or denial of service, P2P-DNS will operate as a distributed and less centralized service hosted by the users of DNS. Today the project continues, barely. A majority of interest shifted to namecoin once the idea was realized, but coder Caleb James DeLisle continues on the first project. So far he has DHT nodes and routers worked out, and awaits help on his IRC channel whenever volunteers are willing to join."

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It's supper time! (-1, Offtopic)

momoola (2487780) | more than 2 years ago | (#37748840)

Don't read this... it is a curse...

In 2006, a little boy named Zach was sitting in the back seat of his mother's car whilst they were driving home from the grocery store. In his arms, he held a ventriloquist dummy named Slappy. Zach was rocking Slappy back and forth in his arms as if Slappy was a baby. Then, suddenly, he tried to throw Slappy out the window. However, Slappy latched onto the side of the car and climbed back in faster than Zach could even believe! Zach apologized profusely and Slappy eventually forgave him.

Then, when Zach finally arrived home, he somehow locked Slappy in his mom's car, ran up on his porch, and then proceeded to point at Slappy and laugh at the seemingly hopeless situation that he was in. This action proved to be a mistake, however. In an event that completely took Zach by surprise, Slappy turned into a twinkling star that couldn't have been much bigger than a few inches, flew directly through the car door, and then went right into Zach's bootyass!

Still stunned at this unexpected development, Zach heard Slappy saying, from the inside of his bootyass, "Iiiiiiit's suuuuuuuuuuuppeeeer tiiiiiiiiiiiiiiime!" Then, before Zach could even react to those malice-filled words, Slappy began saying, "rarara!" Slappy was consuming all of the feces in Zach's bootyass, inflicting major tickle upon it! Zach, in a desperate attempt to make the tickle stop, ran into his mom's garden and began rubbing dirt in his face. The tickle, however, only worsened...

Now that you have read this (even a single word of it), Slappy will turn into a twinkling star, fly into your bootyass, and then consume all of the feces inside it (inflicting major tickle upon your bootyass)! To prevent this from happening, copy and paste this entire comment and then repost it as a comment three times.

Re:It's supper time! (-1, Offtopic)

imakemusic (1164993) | more than 2 years ago | (#37749028)

Don't read this...

Ok.

security (0)

neight108 (974915) | more than 2 years ago | (#37748850)

this doesn't sound very secure.

Re:security (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37749098)

It does make you wonder about the technical details... There has to be some cryptographic way of ensuring exclusive ownership and control over a domain. For one, I know that Freenet implements something similar using "signed" pages, where the identifier of such a page is a random-looking sequence somehow related to your signing key, and for each new version of the page you just increment some number appended at the end. There is no central authority and you can still "own" a Freenet "address". Then again, this method only pertains to pages of content and not domains, which don't exist in the Freenet world.

Re:security (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37904542)

this doesn't sound very secure.

That's how I judge everything. By how it sounds. Forget looking at code, analyzing scientific data, or running my own tests--I like to go with my 'gut' feeling. That (and the marketing materials) lead me to believe Windows 98 was the most secure operating system ever built. It had 98% more security. Then Windows Millennium edition came out. Doesn't the word millennium sound super secure? Maybe he should call it millennium DNS just so you feel safe.

Trademarks? (2)

MightyYar (622222) | more than 2 years ago | (#37748872)

I know they are the "pirate party", but there needs to be some way to protect trademarks. As much as I like the dark underbelly of the internet, I also like being able to use online banking and such without having to remember something like the_REAL_bank_of_america.com

Re:Trademarks? (1)

bfree (113420) | more than 2 years ago | (#37748914)

What do you propose is done about apple.* or any other (generic) words which are trademarked only within specific fields of endevour? Should smeg.* really be out of bounds for all dwarfers because somewhere in the world some company has a trademark on it for some specific use?

Re:Trademarks? (2)

MightyYar (622222) | more than 2 years ago | (#37749118)

There's over a hundred years of trademark law to handle these disputes, and in general it works well. Apple.com could have gone to The Apple Growers Co-Op or some such if they got there first, but applecomputer.com is a clear trademark. This is a solved problem, with only a smattering of cases that cause real issues (Nissan being one).

Re:Trademarks? (1)

Stormthirst (66538) | more than 2 years ago | (#37749196)

This is safe for work [smeg.com]

Re:Trademarks? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37751144)

This is safe for work [smeg.com]

Seems legit.

Re:Trademarks? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37749334)

I know they are the "pirate party"

You know wrong.
Peter Sunde has on several occations stated that he has nothing to do with the Pirate Party and that he votes for the Greens.
Don't confuse The Pirate Bay with The Pirate Party, they have about as much in common as Crocodile Dundee and Indiana Jones.

Re:Trademarks? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37749826)

You know wrong.
Peter Sunde has on several occations stated that he has nothing to do with the Pirate Party and that he votes for the Greens.

There's no problem, the Greens in European Parliament (i.e. where it counts) adopted most of the Pirate Party's views [slashdot.org] on copyright terms, digital freedoms/drm, privacy, etc. This is what I see the Pirate Party to be about: not to become a power itself, but to get it's "talking points" on the political agenda and adopted. The problem is that most parties try to leave this in the shade so they can continue to cozy up to Big Content at a very low direct electionary cost.

Re:Trademarks? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37750568)

Greens in European Parliament (i.e. where it counts) adopted most of the Pirate Party's views on copyright terms, digital freedoms/drm, privacy, etc.

And the Greens in the Swedish Parliament. (The ones that gets Mr. Sundes vote and that are relevant to this case.) are placed consideratly more to the left than those in the European Parliament.

Re:Trademarks? (1)

Hentes (2461350) | more than 2 years ago | (#37750188)

Trademarks only apply to a specific area of the market. Internet is used by all kinds of companies and people. Trademarks should not determine who gets a domain name.

Re:Trademarks? (1)

MightyYar (622222) | more than 2 years ago | (#37750554)

Trademarks should not determine who gets a domain name.

I don't think it is a helpful DNS system that doesn't incorporate trademark law. The only people it helps are domain squatters. Trademark certainly helps companies, but it also helps consumers. It's not desirable to have some random guy selling software with the domain name Microsoft.com just because he got to it first. I mean, we'd all learn to live with it, but I certainly don't see any system without trademark protections gaining ground on traditional DNS. Who the heck would adopt it? Certainly not any companies.

Free market (1)

Hentes (2461350) | more than 2 years ago | (#37751296)

I think free market could handle that. If a name is important enough for a company, they will buy it from its owner. In fact, domain names should be sold on auctions. Also, what I was trying to point out that sometimes several entities from different fields own the smae trademark. But the biggest problem with that is that it gives companies an unfair advantage as they are the ones controlling the majority of trademarks. The current system encourages excessive IP herding, as it is a requirement to get domains, driving the market in a bad direction.

Re:Free market (1)

MightyYar (622222) | more than 2 years ago | (#37751536)

If a name is important enough for a company, they will buy it from its owner.

You are describing the existing system. The only time trademark interferes with this in the current system is when someone tries to use a trademark in commerce. I could set up a site called "microsoft_sucks.com" and be just fine. But if I started selling software from that site, then I would probably lose a trademark case.

But the biggest problem with that is that it gives companies an unfair advantage as they are the ones controlling the majority of trademarks.

I don't know that I agree that this is a problem. Trademarks are meant for commerce - it makes sense that companies would hold most of them. Under the current system, an apple-selling collective could have acquired apple.com and used it for selling apples. Or Apple Records could have acquired apple.com. Or just a squatter who posts pictures of apples. Whatever. So long as you don't start selling computers, phones, and such, you are probably OK. Type nissan.com for example (though the poor bastard had to fight hard to keep that one).

My concern is where someone acquires "microsoft.p2p" and then starts selling software. Or "bankofamerica.p2p" and starts offering banking. It's confusing and unnecessary, and only aids fraudsters - not companies or consumers.

Re:Free market (1)

Hentes (2461350) | more than 2 years ago | (#37753228)

I don't know that I agree that this is a problem. Trademarks are meant for commerce - it makes sense that companies would hold most of them.

Yes, trademarks are meant for commerce, and the web is not a commercial thing, but a general communication medium. I don't have a problem with companies holding trademarks, I have problems with domain names seized based on trademark claims.

My concern is where someone acquires "microsoft.p2p" and then starts selling software. Or "bankofamerica.p2p" and starts offering banking. It's confusing and unnecessary, and only aids fraudsters - not companies or consumers.

I'm not sure what you meant...you have a problem with TLDs?

Re:Free market (1)

MightyYar (622222) | more than 2 years ago | (#37755766)

Yes, trademarks are meant for commerce, and the web is not a commercial thing, but a general communication medium.

OK, but trademark law applies to other communication mediums such as paper, TV, etc. The internet is unbelievably cool, but it is hardly the first "general communication medium".

I'm not sure what you meant...you have a problem with TLDs?

Not at all. I was using "p2p" as an example because that is what the distributed DNS system uses.

Re:Trademarks? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37767270)

This is exactly the sort of thing that ICANN spends most of its time discussing. If you want a DNS that spends a lot of time thinking about how to respect trademarks appropriately (for better or worse), stick with ICANN and don't use alternative roots. Which is what most of the world will do.

Re:Trademarks? (1)

MightyYar (622222) | more than 2 years ago | (#37774032)

Agreed. I was pointing it out as a reason it could not replace the ICANN system. I certainly have no problem with systems that combat censorship (e.g. FreeNet, TOR, etc).

What the.... (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37748892)

What kind of genius runs his webservers on port 82? Thanks, now a fifth of the readers can't see it due to firewalls.

Re:What the.... (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37748944)

What kind of Slashdot reader doesn't have immediate access to an outside proxy?!?

Re:What the.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37749002)

What kind of firewall allows connections to outside proxies?

Re:What the.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37749082)

Only those that allow outbound traffic.

Re:What the.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37749094)

Ones that allow connections to proxies running on port 80.

Re:What the.... (1)

TheCRAIGGERS (909877) | more than 2 years ago | (#37749184)

The kind of reader that wishes to stay employed.

Re:What the.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37752380)

Oh... You mean the kind of reader that shouldn't be reading /. at work?

Re:What the.... (1)

TheCRAIGGERS (909877) | more than 2 years ago | (#37763818)

I can read it just fine.

However, purposely subverting a firewall rule would surely be grounds for getting sacked.

Re:What the.... (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37748980)

One of my co-workers does. He started on 80. had to pay extra to have his service re-enabled. Then went to 81; succeeded for three years before his ISP found that. Paid extra to re-enable service. Next, tried port 82. It's been a year and a half or so and he's still runnin' strong. lol

Re:What the.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37749316)

Nigel Tufnel: The ports all go to 81. Look, right across the board, 81, 81, 81 and...
Marty DiBergi: Oh, I see. And most ports go up to 80?
Nigel Tufnel: Exactly.
Marty DiBergi: Does that mean it's webbier? Is it any webbier?
Nigel Tufnel: Well, it's one more, isn't it? It's not 80. You see, most blokes, you know, will put their web servers at 80. You're on 80 here, all the way up, all the way up, all the way up, you're on 80 on your web server. Where can you go from there? Where?
Marty DiBergi: I don't know.
Nigel Tufnel: Nowhere. Exactly. What we do is, if we need that extra push over the cliff, you know what we do?
Marty DiBergi: Put it on 81.
Nigel Tufnel: 81. Exactly. One webbier.
Marty DiBergi: Why don't you just make 80 webbier and make 80 be the top port and make that a little webbier?
Nigel Tufnel: [pause] These go to 81.

Re:What the.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37749704)

yay a spinal tap reference :)

ICANN? No you can't, buddy. (2)

elrous0 (869638) | more than 2 years ago | (#37748898)

Don't worry, I'm sure the U.S. will just declare this a terrorist movement and start actively blocking all alternative DNS servers by IP. Then we can get into the escalating you-jailbreak-it-we-find-a-way-to-stop-the-jailbreak-you-jailbreak-it-again game that seems to be the inevitable result of a conflict between those who want total freedom and those who want to stifle freedom within their own self-serving carefully defined boundaries.

Re:ICANN? No you can't, buddy. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37748924)

Lol, still ain't gonna stop me and my buddies from trading hosts.txt lists, even if it's necessary to use physical paper to do so.

Re:ICANN? No you can't, buddy. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37749548)

Lolling @ U & ur other 12-y-o butt buddies when U figure out 4chan ain't hosted in ur hood, homey.

Re:ICANN? No you can't, buddy. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37748960)

I'm sure the U.S. will just declare this a terrorist movement

Even if they would, it has no bearing in Europe.

Re:ICANN? No you can't, buddy. (1)

justforgetme (1814588) | more than 2 years ago | (#37749188)

Didn't Osama say that?

Re:ICANN? No you can't, buddy. (1, Flamebait)

cavreader (1903280) | more than 2 years ago | (#37749046)

While there is a lot to criticize about the US government their administration of the DNS servers has been pretty solid. Maybe you would like to transfer control to the UN? Most of those fuckwits need their aides to show them how to access their e-mail and Twitter setup and do not have the slightest understanding of what the DNS actually does.

Re:ICANN? No you can't, buddy. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37749174)

Yes, I'm sure the US government has a solid understanding of the intertubes.

Re:ICANN? No you can't, buddy. (1)

silas_moeckel (234313) | more than 2 years ago | (#37749512)

They have done a good job over the years the primary issue is lately they have been using that control to assume all non country tlds fall under us law and summarily removing domains without any recourse of procedure. The legislature needs to specifically protect the DNS system from us law enforcement. Short term a presidential order would cover it. Require a judges order in the country that the domain is registered in.

Re:ICANN? No you can't, buddy. (1)

John Hasler (414242) | more than 2 years ago | (#37749984)

Require a judges order in the country that the domain is registered in.

.com, .org, .net, etc domains are registered in the USA and so come under USA jurisdiction. Your nation has a national registry. Use it. Much better to have many national registries than one monolithic central one whether controlled by the USA or the UN (better yet would be a decentralized system, of course).

Re:ICANN? No you can't, buddy. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37750478)

Perhaps if they went back to the original terms for registering names.

To get a .org you have to prove you were an international non-profit organisation. .com should only be international companies. .net was only for international network infrastructure.

USA based companies should be registered in the state they are in eg. co.us for Colorado, in.us for Indiana.
Then the regional registrars can do their own thing and the international ones can be put under the control on the UN.

But they put the DNS in the hands of a commercial company and they stopped having rules for registering and accepted anyone with money to sign up for a name.

DHCP6 (1)

unixisc (2429386) | more than 2 years ago | (#37748918)

Ain't DHCP6 likely to render DNS redundant anyway, since in IPv6, there won't be mention of DNS servers, domain names & the like the way one does w/ DHCP4? (It's why even if one uses autoconfiguration to assign devices IPv6 addresses, one would still be using DHCP6.)

Re:DHCP6 (1)

XanC (644172) | more than 2 years ago | (#37749374)

No.

Re:DHCP6 (1)

Lennie (16154) | more than 2 years ago | (#37751664)

Something like:

"RFC 5006 - IPv6 Router Advertisement Option for DNS Configuration"

Does not work for you ?

I know on Debian based distributions you can install 'rdnssd' for that.

I'm more worried abut the USA losing control... (3, Interesting)

John Hasler (414242) | more than 2 years ago | (#37748940)

...to the UN, which would hand DNS over to something like WIPO. At first glance Namecoin looks great. Let's try to make it work. We need to get it up and running before major governments start outlawing what they will call "rogue" DNS.

Re:I'm more worried abut the USA losing control... (1, Insightful)

justforgetme (1814588) | more than 2 years ago | (#37749260)

I haven't tried namecoin yet, is it responsive enough to host real web applications on it?

One other thing google didn't answer, in bitcoin, minters are supposed to also get money off of transactions facilitating a means to keep up with minting costs once all block are generated. Isn't that (minting costs + DNS resolution/hosting costs) going to be disproportionate when dns traffic (lookup requests) get very high if namecoin succeeds?

Re:I'm more worried abut the USA losing control... (5, Insightful)

Xest (935314) | more than 2 years ago | (#37749270)

Yawn, I've said it many a time, anti UN whinging about this is just stupid and demonstrates massive ignorance. The UN already objectively handles this sort of thing well with it's management of international telephony (ITU), international maritime standards (IMO), international air standards (ICAO), international post (UPU) and so forth. The fact you apparently don't realise this is a testament to the great job they do, have you never wondered why you can easily send post to different countries with no wonder about htf it's going to get there? have you never wondered why there's no problems with planes flown by people from different countries with different cultures, speaking different languages crossing tens of borders within a single flight? have you never wondered how painlessly you can make a phone call abroad despite the plethora of different national telecommunications laws, concepts, and technologies between countries?

The UN is perfect to this role, because unlike the US it means no single country can enforce anything, it means consent is required of all member nations to push through things like web blocking. That means no more arbitrary US censorship with ICE, no more arbitrary effective shut downs of other country's companies corporate sites because some Texas patent troll court wins an injunction the victim never knew was filed against them, no more ability of redneck states to shut down the likes of Antigua's online gambling industry domains simply because of their own ass backwards moral standards. That's of course before you go into the drama of the new buy your own TLD plan which destroys the hierarchial structure of DNS, is technical idiocy, but was allowed through because it means far more cash for ICANN's staff and directors to pocket.

Global consensus in a world with such vast disagreement meaning controversal stuff inevitably finds itself at least one veto, whilst mundane stuff that's pretty essential (like changes relating to DNS Security) passes easily is far more sensible than everything goes P2P, or everyone being forced to adhere to the lowest common denominator state of moral standards in the US.

As for WIPO, would now be a bad time to point out that WIPO worked well like this originally too, with poorer nations vetoing over the top IP protection for the pharmaceutical industry so that the suffering amongst their populace could afford medicine and the like too, but as a result of this, primarily the US, pushed this sort of thing into a new organisation - the WTO precisely so it could bypass the fairness that WIPO originally offered?

Yes, that's right, the UN isn't the problem, a minority of countries like the US is, which is precisely why it shouldn't retain control of ICANN. The only parts of the UN that don't work well are the parts that aren't truly representative of the global community - the likes of the security council, the WTO and so forth, though even these are still better than organisations controlled unilaterally like ICANN. This is why ICANN should be moved to a representative UN organisation like WIPO was before America gimped it, like the ITU, ICAO, UPU etc. thankfully still are

Re:I'm more worried abut the USA losing control... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37749550)

Well articulated !

Re:I'm more worried abut the USA losing control... (1)

Lennie (16154) | more than 2 years ago | (#37751726)

"Well articulated !"

And partly wrong.

The UN would actually like to get more involved, but most of the Internet is already handled by other organisations: ICANN, ISOC, RIPE, ARIN, APNIC, etc.

Re:I'm more worried abut the USA losing control... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37749680)

ITU isn't working nearly as well as you think on the fringes. We've got all sorts of spectrum problems that the ITU is supposed to take care of. Further, DNS going to an international organization is a political game played for specific political ends. You see how well the UN protects people in that regards. WIPO, Human rights council, etc...

Re:I'm more worried abut the USA losing control... (5, Insightful)

Infernal Device (865066) | more than 2 years ago | (#37749756)

Yes, the UN generally does an OK job, except for that bit where they want to censor speech that makes other parties feel bad.

http://www.nydailynews.com/opinions/2009/01/14/2009-01-14_unacceptable_censorship_the_united_natio.html [nydailynews.com]

There is not one common standard for "defamation". An atheist might say that it is impossible to "defame" a religion, since they're all made up anyway. A hard-line Christian or Muslim might conclude that any criticism whatsoever was defamation. Additionally, the freedom of speech in member countries is not synchronized in the least. Consider that in the UK, a newspaper can be ordered to not publish certain articles about individuals, which is practically inconceivable in the US. German courts have ruled that the names of criminals cannot be published alongside their crimes, regardless of the fact that they actually committed such crimes (not "may have committed", but "actually did commit").

Where does it stop? Once we allow the UN the toehold in determining what is acceptable speech, where is the line that cannot be crossed?

Re:I'm more worried abut the USA losing control... (2)

Xest (935314) | more than 2 years ago | (#37754628)

Right, but that's precisely my point. You're referring to a section of the UN that relies on simple majority vote, rather than the sections I pointed to which rely on international consensus to operate.

I quite agreed with you in my original post that the sections of the UN that don't work are those where consensus is not required and where vested interests can succesfully pursue their agenda like the US does with the WTO.

The problem with your argument is that you're then extrapolating this to imply the whole of the UN is like this which is simply wrong and as I said previously demonstrates little more than ignorance of the UN. It's populist tosh, it's completely false and simply plays to the xenophobic ultra-patriotic tea-party America mindset that's a disease on this planet.

I agree the UN has bad points, bad groupings- the fact countries like Iran and Libya were on the human rights panel was a complete fucking joke for instance, but that's not the point - the point is organisations like the ITU that rely on consensus and which would have to be far more of a blueprint for any UN organisation if not handled by the ITU itself work very very well - again, far better than unilateral US control and besides - even if you had a valid point, that the UN does follow in it's entirety the majority rule demonstrated in the link you posted, how is this better than the US' unilateral control involving censorship of gambling and so forth? Although I don't personally agree with it at least in the article you linked there's a fair argument that condemning religious hate speak has the goal of preventing unnecessary violence in the world - what does censoring foreign gambling sites, legitimate foreign businesses, or sites arbitrarily defined as piracy sites achieve for the world exactly other than decreased access to culture?

Re:I'm more worried abut the USA losing control... (1)

sznupi (719324) | more than 2 years ago | (#37885152)

German courts have ruled that the names of criminals cannot be published alongside their crimes, regardless of the fact that they actually committed such crimes (not "may have committed", but "actually did commit").

The real goal doesn't need to be, typically implied by critics, "protecting the criminal" and such. This can be also easily about protecting random others who will get caught in the debris. Kinda like what Xest points out, "in the article you linked there's a fair argument that condemning religious hate speak has the goal of preventing unnecessary violence in the world"

Opposition to such anonymity perhaps partly stems, also, from "traditional" outlooks at punishment... but remember, those were formed when words couldn't travel very far anyway, and communities were rather small.
However - in case you haven't noticed - the apes running around figured out mass-media & long-distance communication (we're probably on different continents...). And they don't waste time, they breed quite a lot - but at the same time they are very sentimental about already obsolete (given the numbers of apes involved and their reach; after only around 2 to 3 centuries, in most places - earlier, even just one name was enough) but popular means of identification and tracing "lineage" (even if it's largely just one of their myths, considering the typical levels of infidelity & just very recent appearance of genetic paternity tests)

Large part of what you're doing by publishing names, is exposing to ostracism plenty of people who share them by pure chance.
It most likely would be like that even with photos, half of humanity is similar to somebody. I've had 2 instances of clearly non-demented people being mistakenly absolutely sure I'm one of their buddies (me even looking rather uncommonly with longish hair and some beard, 600k city, random encounters in the public transport and in a swimming pool changing room). It's much worse when people kinda-think-they-remember some random face they've seen few times in the news / we are very bad at remembering such random ones, really: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mistaken_identity [wikipedia.org] , http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eyewitness_identification [wikipedia.org] , http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eyewitness_testimony [wikipedia.org] , "it has been shown that in experimental tasks, participant performance was closer to chance than actually being able to recognize faces previously presented" [wikipedia.org]
Publish whole address, neighbourhood - and you expose the locals to blame and ostracism by association.

It can even jump across generations (for example: nobody even remembers, nobody really knows why the Cagots were shunted, hated, and prosecuted; "because they come from Cagot family" seemed to be the only consistant reason; rhyming songs kept the names of Cagot families known, after the first efforts of govs which tried to abolish this injustice - yeah, those evil entities, of which UN is the ~top reflection)

I've had enough of this throughout all of my youth (if not exactly the same kind - strong ostracism starting, largely, from a random name; which was just a bit too meaningful linguistically, in a somewhat unfortunate way; all in a small, provincial, "decent" city, of the kind respecting "traditional values"). It's not pretty (and you probably can't understand it if your whole early life hasn't been shaped by such) ...it was hell, actually (drop the "many have worse" - one can say that to pretty much anybody ...what matters in the end, I suspect, is the amount of shared experiences with a group / exclusion from positive ones; also, after quickly glancing over, this [wikipedia.org] looks like a decent initial page)

PS. (1)

sznupi (719324) | more than 2 years ago | (#37915274)

Generally, Germany tries to be (with mixed results) quite cautious, vigilant about things which can negatively brand a group of people by some vague association. You see, they had a bad experience with such practices, in the first half of XX century.
For example, AFAIK, German authorities don't really follow the statistics about ethnicity, skin colour, "race" of their population, they don't really know how it's distributed (does Berlin has, say, 100k or 300k black people? Who knows; at most one can tell, I think, how many immigrated from African countries)

Also... what, are we really not satisfied from how the unnamed criminal will get, considered fair by the courts, officially sanctioned punishment? Wishing for "traditional" treatment, with simplistic views of overall effects on the world? (come to think of it, what happened during WW2 wasn't that unusual, in human history - it was mostly how new methods & technology allowed for terrifying scales and efficiencies) Would we like some groups of people to take matters in their own hands?... (vigilantism seems to be revving up on the web as is, anyway, up to libel with impunity; lets be careful not to return to extralegal punishments, mob justice, witch-hunts...)

An atheist might say that it is impossible to "defame" a religion, since they're all made up anyway.

Actually, he might just say that religions defame each other constantly, anyway :P (and "a hard-line Christian or Muslim" might not really care about other than his)

Re:I'm more worried abut the USA losing control... (1)

zash.se (1342685) | more than 2 years ago | (#37749992)

People also forget that it wasn't ICANN that let ICE seize those domains, it was VeriSign, who administers the .com domain.

Re:I'm more worried abut the USA losing control... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37750456)

Yes! I love how they manage the Human Rights Commission giving membership to People's Republic of China, Zimbabwe, Russia, Saudi Arabia, and Pakistan, and the past memberships of Algeria, Syria, Libya, Uganda and Vietnam. Such stalwarts of human rights. Great job guys!

Re:I'm more worried abut the USA losing control... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37750780)

There is no country that is a stewart of human rights. The United States is right up there with China and Russia. It assinated its own citizen without any due process a few weeks back and did so with full public knowledge. It runs the largest terror network in the world, and has been training terrorists for decades. Even supposed liberals like JFK and Carter have signed off on covert terror campaigns throughout the world.

Re:I'm more worried abut the USA losing control... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37750850)

have you never wondered why there's no problems with planes flown by people from different countries with different cultures, speaking different languages crossing tens of borders within a single flight?

News flash: for commercial air flights, all air traffic controllers and pilots are required to speak English.

have you never wondered how painlessly you can make a phone call abroad despite the plethora of different national telecommunications laws, concepts, and technologies between countries?

And both are most likely due to countries wanting to follow and benefit from the technological leadership of systems implemented in the US, at the time. ITU and air traffic were formalizations of the process. My guess is that the UN didn't/doesn't really do anything, outside of rubber-stamping systems that were already in place.

IMO one of the worst things that could be done would be to hand over what is essentially a technical domain problem to a group of politicians. The UN, outside of maybe the Security Council and General Assembly which recognizes governments and countries and occasionally deploys "peacekeeping" forces, is pretty worthless.

Re:I'm more worried abut the USA losing control... (2)

Xest (935314) | more than 2 years ago | (#37754676)

"IMO one of the worst things that could be done would be to hand over what is essentially a technical domain problem to a group of politicians. The UN, outside of maybe the Security Council and General Assembly which recognizes governments and countries and occasionally deploys "peacekeeping" forces, is pretty worthless."

This is another fine example of the ignorant scourge that plagues these kind of political debates. What are you on about handing over a technical problem to politicians? You are aware that the likes of the ITU, UNESCO and so forth are staffed by some of the formost experts in their fields? Not people who have any political standing, no, people who have worked themselves up from being average Joes to knowing something about the field in question.

The only part of the UN you hear about are the politicians sure, but there are far more people making the cogs turn doing things that make our increasingly globalised and interconnected world work together seamlessly in a number of ways - again, the examples I cited are pretty good demonstrations of this - telecomms, post, maritime, and air.

Re:I'm more worried abut the USA losing control... (1)

jc42 (318812) | more than 2 years ago | (#37755508)

News flash: for commercial air flights, all air traffic controllers and pilots are required to speak English.

Well, maybe, if by "English" you mean a language with only a few hundred words and extremely restricted syntax. It's a subset smaller than the language spoken by most British and American 5-year-olds.

And I've seen it pointed out that most of the "content" words in the aviation subset of English are nearly identical to their French and Spanish equivalents. But the phonetics are more like English, or maybe the midpoint between English and Spanish. It doesn't sound very much like French, except when spoken by native speakers of French.

Of course, the airlines do tend to give preference to people with a better than legal minimum English proficiency. They also like to have people in the cockpit who are fluent speakers of the native languages at both ends of a flight. This can be useful in emergency situations.

What we can look forward to, though, is a future of remote-control of airplanes, in which the communication is outsourced to minimum-wage workers in the cheapest part of the world, who have mostly never been in an airplane. The military is pioneering this right now. Then it'll then take decades for the companies to figure out that this isn't working very well ...

Re:I'm more worried abut the USA losing control... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37758360)

By the time things become ITU standards, the manufacturers already figured out interop issues years before.

Re:I'm more worried abut the USA losing control... (3, Insightful)

ledow (319597) | more than 2 years ago | (#37749282)

The problems I see with namecoin appear to be:

1) You have to buy the name-IP links. This is usually by crunching a certain amount of numbers for either bitcoin or namecoin. To me, this says that he who has the most computing power (i.e. government / banks / spammers) wins all the interesting names.

2) Because they have monetary value (and are created by it), you can potentially run into problems when transferring them to someone, or receiving - unwittingly handling stolen goods, etc.

3) The above = first come, first served. Yes, DNS has this problem too but first-come, first-served on something that is starting from scratch seems stupid. Why is there no thought yet to integration with existing DNS? The value of the DNS system is NOT in the management of it, but in the data included in it. Without that data, .namecoin is just as bad as any other .obscure TLD.

4) The name links are purely one name to one IP. No load-balancing, mailservers, SPF, DNS tricks, etc. This I would consider to be a HUGE disadvantage. If you're going to replace DNS, then you need to replace DNS. Not go back in time to pre-DNS days and implement only the single, simplest job that it does and which would be insufficient for huge swathes of the Internet. Hell, even if they'd just set it so that was the nameserver it linked to (which could then answer more questions about the subdomains, other records etc.), it would have been infinitely more useful, but that's NOT what it appears to do.

5) It's all a bit convoluted. Patches to this and that, here and there.

It seems to me that a P2P DNS alternative should act as nothing more than a P2P lookup of the already-existing and conventional DNS data. If enough people think that www.example.com resolves to 1.2.3.4, that's what it should resolve to under P2P DNS. There's no reason that a trust / reputation system couldn't do this, and still be secure to those people who trust nobody.

Sure, you can have other TLD's of your own choosing for purely P2P services, but what people want is a replica of current DNS under a different backend protocol, not a half-assed replacement.

I still need to look up google.com much more often than I would anything.namecoin and there's no facility to account for that currently. And, what the hell do you do about DNSSEC? If that comes first, you lose.

Re:I'm more worried abut the USA losing control... (1)

IamTheRealMike (537420) | more than 2 years ago | (#37750936)

It seems to me that a P2P DNS alternative should act as nothing more than a P2P lookup of the already-existing and conventional DNS data. If enough people think that www.example.com resolves to 1.2.3.4, that's what it should resolve to under P2P DNS. There's no reason that a trust / reputation system couldn't do this, and still be secure to those people who trust nobody.

The issue is how you define "enough people" such that it's not trivially exploited by having a single guy rent a bunch of proxies. CPU time isn't a perfect substitute, but it's easier to steal IPs than CPU power (people tend to notice when their computer slows down and heats up). If you purely use signatures, you have to find some way of building that up so it's not dependent on a SPOF.

But I tend to think P2P DNS is not that useful. DNS is already distributed. If you don't like US policies, get a domain name in some other country. Moving your domain name but not the underlying servers solves nothing because then they'll just take your servers or your IP addresses. If you want/need full anonymity, Tor already provides a P2P secure DNS along with hiding of the underlying IP address. If you don't want that, regular DNS works ok.

not quite the right goal (1)

lkcl (517947) | more than 2 years ago | (#37749054)

i've mentioned this before, and it's worth mentioning again: the p2p-dns project's goals appear to be to create a separate ".p2p" top-level domain rather than to provide a complete distributed DNS replacement. that's just simply not ambitious or useful enough. we need a replacement where you put in the alternative DNS into your system and it takes over and goes seamlessly from there. you then rely on "crowd-sourcing" from the intelligent people just like cloudmark do distributed spam filtering to check that the submitted DNS alternative zone files are actually correct.

Re:not quite the right goal (2)

Zironic (1112127) | more than 2 years ago | (#37749140)

Well, from a technical standpoint if they get .p2p to work, it's fairly trivial to then change it to work for all domains.

The reason that these projects use their own top level domain is so they can avoid spending time on resolving name space conflicts.

Namecoin = stupid (3, Interesting)

GameboyRMH (1153867) | more than 2 years ago | (#37749356)

Namecoin has a first-come-first-served system of domain ownership with no oversight. That means it will only ever be popular with Internet libertarians, because nobody else would want to touch such an anarchic hellhole. It would never ever be practical for business. Ever. And .onion is technically better so it's not even useful for uber-geek tinkering.

Re:Namecoin = stupid (2)

Infernal Device (865066) | more than 2 years ago | (#37749598)

That they are using the same method of "earning" a domain name makes me about as uncomfortable as I am with bitcoin. Additionally, it will become near impossible to purchase a domain name in the future, as the difficulty in mining namecoins rises.

I feel like their project is missing the point - the issue is censorship and bypassing it, rather than purchasing names.

Re:Namecoin = stupid (1)

Zan Lynx (87672) | more than 2 years ago | (#37750364)

The issue that is solved by "buying" names is spamming.

A DNS replacement that had no cost per name would be drowned by people running scripts to register {/usr/share/dict/words}.com

Re:Namecoin = stupid (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37755736)

NameCoin does /exactly/ this, there is a cost to buy a domain. Do not speak if you have no idea, do not spread FUD.

Re:Namecoin = stupid (1)

Hentes (2461350) | more than 2 years ago | (#37751412)

The Internet became what it is today because of its anarchy.

Re:Namecoin = stupid (1)

GameboyRMH (1153867) | more than 2 years ago | (#37752636)

What? The Internet is very hierarchical. The only reason the US government doesn't have sole control over DNS is national TLDs. Darknets that run on top of the Internet are another matter. That said, the only part of the Internet that actually needs any hierarchy is DNS.

Convergence? (1)

Gyorg_Lavode (520114) | more than 2 years ago | (#37749808)

Could convergence be implemented for DNS resolution as well? Could you resolve a domain through the standard DNS hierarchy, through a p2p net, and through another means then take the most likely value from what you get back? Seems it would offer graceful degridation.

There are some implementations already out there (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37750198)

Networks like Tor, Freenet, AnoNet/DarkNET Conglomeration and I2P have some kind of distributed DNS. Projects like Netsukuku implement a distributed DNS: http://www.kuro5hin.org/story/2005/10/6/101832/209

Go figure (1)

The Dawn Of Time (2115350) | more than 2 years ago | (#37751324)

"We'd like you to work hard to spread free entertainment" isn't a compelling cause. Who would have guessed that.

Bind9 dsn server (1)

lister king of smeg (2481612) | more than 2 years ago | (#37752902)

instead of using a distributed dsn service of questionable reliability why not just install bind9 on your computer and it will be its own dsn server. anyone with Linux or a mac could do this and as for windows users they could run say damn small Linux or another tiny Linux variant in a vm with bind9 dsn server installed on it. and route your dsn requests to it?

The Internet Spring? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37802350)

First, we had the Arab Spring. Now, we have the Internet Spring! Hmm... somehow, I don't think so.

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