[At-Large] Impressions from the Whois-Review

Beau Brendler beaubrendler at earthlink.net
Wed Feb 2 20:44:37 UTC 2011

It also concerns me when I see labels used like "law and order" in conjunction with statements made that the at-large leans toward the "law and order" side...which is somehow in opposition to the "privacy" side? We are not going to find middle ground with that world view. I have used "law and order" to characterize my perspective, coming as I do from a decade writing about Internet crime -- but it can't just be assumed that I'm "anti-privacy." I can't think of any consumer organization or advocate in the world who could be characterized as being against privacy protection. Most of the time, though, privacy dialog at the consumer advocacy level doesn't penetrate to WHOIS, but is more about behavior of corporate marketers and data aggregators, poor standards for breach notification, etc. 

-----Original Message-----
>From: "John R. Levine" <johnl at iecc.com>
>Sent: Feb 2, 2011 3:11 PM
>To: At-Large Worldwide <at-large at atlarge-lists.icann.org>
>Subject: Re: [At-Large] Impressions from the Whois-Review
>> I cannot accept that there cannot be a balance between the right to privacy
>> and the right to know for those harmed by an act traceable to a domain.
>There certainly should be a balance.  But when there are a billion 
>Internet users, and thousands of individual vanity domain registrants, it 
>is silly to argue that the two interests are of the same weight and also 
>to argue, as many have over the past decade, that vanity registrants must 
>not be put to any extra or effort at all if they don't want to be treated 
>the same as the businesses and organizations that register the vast 
>majority of domains.
>I also have to say that it is not helpful when people make claims, as 
>we've seen recently, that WHOIS is useless for tracking miscreants, which 
>is false, or that it's only used to research trivial misbehavior, which is 
>equally false.  It is also unhelpful when people refuse to recognize the 
>scale of the modern Internet, in which web hosts routinely turn down 
>thousands of domains every day for anti-social behavior.  The real 
>surprise is that they don't make more mistakes than they do.
>All of my own domains have accurate WHOIS info.  I use a post office box 
>to receive my mail, so they don't show my home address, which I don't 
>think is an unreasonable burden.
>John Levine, johnl at iecc.com, Primary Perpetrator of "The Internet for Dummies",
>Please consider the environment before reading this e-mail. http://jl.ly
>At-Large mailing list
>At-Large at atlarge-lists.icann.org
>At-Large Official Site: http://atlarge.icann.org

More information about the At-Large mailing list