There are two great articles up at Ars Technica right now, an alphabet soup of Internetty goodness. First up is Eric Bangeman’s piece about ICANN examining a proposal later this month that would shield contact information in the WHOIS records for URLs. I just can’t imagine a life without unsolicited snail mail of unusual, hand-scrawled requests from random US prisoners in my PO Box. Snip:
The Task Force is recommending that domain name owners be permitted to list third-party contact information instead of their own. Administrative and technical contacts would be no longer displayed within the whois system, with their information being supplanted by an “operational point of contact.”
An operational point of contact would be responsible for resolving—you guessed it—operational issues themselves, or passing on data to the actual owner of a domain.
Domain name owners who have seen their personal data plucked from whois records and used by spammers, along with privacy advocates, will likely welcome the change. Other constituencies aren’t so happy about it. Cybersquatters and other scam artists could more easily hide their identities from law enforcement, while others with a legitimate need to discover the identity of a domain owner would find it much more difficult.
Next, from yesterday is the excellent writeup by Jacqui Cheng about the NFL’s DMCA fumble, and that they might face sanctions. This piece has pretty much the most comprehensive explanation about the bizarre actions of the NFL (!) against the EFF’s Wendy Seltzer I’ve seen yet. I love how Cheng concludes with musings on how easy it is to push over You Tube (and yes, this is the makings of DMCA abuse porn, for sure), Snip:
It’s no secret that some content owners don’t seem to understand how the DMCA works—that, or they simply don’t care when sending mass takedown notices. This seems to be the case with the recent saga of legal maneuvers between the National Football League (NFL) and Brooklyn Law School professor Wendy Seltzer. The two have been going back and forth with DMCA-related “requests” since early February—with YouTube stuck in between—and in the process, the NFL itself appears to have violated the DMCA.