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The Internet

ICANN Registers Improper Domain Names 244

wetmondo writes "When ICANN was started in order to open up domain registration to competition, some people worried that this might create some problems. Well, here is proof that they were right. Yahoo! is reporting that they screwed up and registered domain names with dashes at the end such as e-.com. Domain names with dashes at the end causes ftp and telnet to fail."
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ICANN Registers Improper Domain Names

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  • by Anonymous Coward
    Ditto for 3Com, which some systems have never been able to resolve. They hired incompetent network geeks; sucks to be them.
  • by Anonymous Coward
    Should they? I thought the philosophy was something like "Be conservative in what you generate, but liberal in what you accept".
  • by Anonymous Coward
    Which is good because?

    I would rather have the news show up when it's news. Sounds like that other poster had the right idea when he said "to keep people reloading and looking at ad banners".

  • by Anonymous Coward
    I don't know why anyone is supprised about this.
    This type of cluelessnes has been running rampent on the Net for at least the last 2 years...

    It's too bad the 'open DNS' guys didn't bother to read the RFCs for the service they claim to be supporting, before allowing this kind of crap.

  • by Anonymous Coward
    I had just the opposite reaction- if you get NSI (of all people!) cleaning up after you, you know you've screwed up.
  • Slash lets authors schedule when their story appears.
  • A digit may not be the first character of a label.

    I bet the folks at 800.com might take issue with this. Whoops...

  • Good point. Perhaps he's a /. bot? Cheaper to feed, and weeds through the submission cruft.

    kidding of course, but then who's ever seen him in public? :)

  • I don't think anyones going postal over the screwup. And FWIW, I agreee with you. I do think however that the folks that had registered these domains are probably getting screwed, especially if they've widely advertised their sites. Reprinting promotional materiel, business cards and whatnot can get very expensive. I wonder if they have a way to get some form of reimbursement/cost coverage for the error the registrars made?
  • Today, and the last couple of days do look pretty odd, but look here:

    Postings by emmett [slashdot.org]

  • Well, that's stupid. But hey, what can we expect from NSI?
  • I'd hope porn sites aren't getting domains under the .org TLD. They should be falling under the .com TLD.
  • I second the motion. Anyone happen to have an address for him?
  • I believe that's correct. But the domain isn't x.com, it's x.org (the official site for the X Consortium, the caretakers of the X Window System codebase). Certainly a special case if ever there was one, wouldn't you agree? Why should they have to go by xconsortium.org or whatever? I know when I think X, I think of X (Window System). Don't you? :)
  • Postel registered all of the single-letter/digit domains in his name.
  • look at w3.org, exodus.net, nethead.com. All stolen today by script kiddies.
  • Actually, I'd probably call it a MUST at this point. They wrote into the contracts that way =)
    BTW read http://www.faqs.org/rfcs/rfc2119.html for the MUST/SHOULD definitions if you don't know what is up with all this.

    Based on http://www.faqs.org/rfcs/rfc1035.html they point out that http://www.faqs.org/rfcs/rfc822.html should be taken into account when making mail domains since you don't want to break mail address parsers. I'd say the world is complicated enough withou changing the rules now!
    --
  • Yeah, trademark namespace is filling up. What ICANN needs to do is start a new 'Trademark Name' service. This would generate seemingly random names that people could use for their products (e.g. Pentium, Itanium) that could then be registered as domains.

    NOTE: This post not for the humor (or humour) impaired.
  • Well, most of the stuff posted here is just as much news at T+1 day as it is at T.
    --
  • A domain name is not supposed to start with a digit,

    Only TLDs are not supposed to start with a digit.

    but this rule is violated in the very RFC for the IN-ADDR.ARPA domain. Arguably, this is not a problem because you can't TELNET directly to an IN-ADDR.ARPA domain host (I find it rather unfortunate that I can't type telnet t.z.y.x.in-addr-arpa as a substitute for telnet x.y.z.t, I've never understood why that is disallowed).

    Why would you want to do that, when the dotted IP notation is shorter? The reason that it doesn't work is that there are different kinds of records for those names - PTR (pointer to name) rather than A (IP address) records.

  • The .org and .net thing bothers me too, but since we're posting on slashdot.org, an andover.net company, it might be best to concede... sigh.

    NSI's ugly sales pitch for .net and .org domains is just another example of why .shop, .biz, .firm (why not .inc?), .nom (.nom? what was wrong with .name?), .arts, and the rest are only a solution to ICANN's need for more money.

  • by dav ( 5309 )
    Just a couple of weeks ago I got all excited when joker.com seemed to accept -.com as an availble domain name. I got all the way to the creditcard info page before the filtering software caught it. Major disappointment.
  • I disagree. For instance, I live in Canada, yet my website is hosted in Texas. We should be moving away from the international TLDs, at least in my opinion.
    I've been talking about more top-level domain names on Slashdot for months. Once again, here's my plan:
    Rather than simply adding a handful of new TLDs, allow the creation of an unlimited number of them. Before, where you might have had apple.com, you could also have apple.apple. The catch is, you only register the rights to the SECOND-level name, allowing others to have apple.linux or linux.apple.
    What do others think about this? The only feedback I've ever recieved about my thoughts for domain name reform basically consisted of a good deal of anti-United Nations ranting. :-)
  • This seems like a classic case of techies missing the point: "Oh, running out of domains? Let's add more." But it isn't domainspace that's crowded, it's the trademark namespace...

    So we just add more letters to the alphabet!..

    --

  • FTP root at microsoft-.com -------------------------------------------------- ------------------------------ 03/13/99 09:08PM Directory bandk
    07/01/98 01:52PM 8 Ftp.txt
    03/01/99 01:07AM 1,029 logosmall.gif
    10/11/99 04:12PM Directory mummersftp
    04/02/98 12:18PM 1,431 New2.gif
    08/22/99 09:07AM 28,804 privacyscanbanner.gif
    01/16/98 12:26PM 1,641 stars500x21.gif
    07/01/98 02:36PM 386 Test.asp
    07/20/99 06:48PM 765 trustefinalmark.gif
    -------------------------------------------------- ------------------------------

    Account Name: guest
    Password:
    This copy of the Ataman Telnetd Server is
    registered as licensed to:
    Computer_Services_Group,_Inc
    Login failed: unknown user name, password or
    privilege incorrect.

    --------------------

  • Next we'll be hearing about "Why isn't there a way to just 'get a domain name' by changing your machine's name under windows?"

    Actually there is - just not a second level domain name.

    At work I have a zone automatically updated from the DHCP database. Just change your machine's name under windows and it shows up on DNS.


    ----
  • Actually it was the competing registars (i.e. competing with Network Solutions). Given them a f---- break. It's not like Network solutions hasn't had it's share of screw ups, even with years of experience behind them.
  • Based on what someone said earlier, I expect that any telnet client that allows telnetting to such a domain name is not implementing the standards for domain names correctly. unix telnet returns quickly with an unknown server error, not even having done an nslookup.
  • Sounds fun. I think its all going to stay messy though, until something "really" different comes along.

    I want the.end btw. :)
  • Active Directory uses existing NT domain names as second+ level Internet domain names. Since the hyphen is a valid NetBIOS name character, Win2000 has to accept Internet domains with a hyphen.

    So for example, if upgrade the NT host with the netbios name BLUE-SCREEN in the LanMan domain BCAST-STORM, the Active directory hostname could become blue-screen.bcast-storm.microsoft-.com. So, the hyphen might be ambigous in traditional definitions, Microsoft pretty much has to accept it for back-wards compatibility (as changing an NT domain name is virtually impossible.)
    --
  • Hrmm, works under Win2k:)

    There you go. Over 5 years in the making and Microsoft *still* releases a broken OS. I just can't believe it is true...

    -Brent
  • It sounds to me like you're describing an intranet, instead of the internet.

    LK
  • That would just increase the costs for regular people like you and me who want to register domains... we'd have to get a huge amount of domains to cover all our bases...

    Besides... what's the advantage of

    WWW.IBM.SALES

    versus

    SALES.IBM.COM
    or
    WWW.IBM.COM/SALES?

    I don't see any... In fact I see a huge amount of overhead being created by your concept. No offense, or anything.
  • Although objective journalism is important, the danger is not domain names ending with hyphens, it's a single company (i.e. Network Solutions) owning all the domains.

    Thankfully, that disaster was averted at the proper time-- when the Internet was truly gaining momentum. Most people concur that this is indeed only the beginning of the revolution.

    I, for one, am glad that this speed bump occured. If anything, it reminds people that domains are no longer owned by a single company, and reminds them of the ridiculous errors said company made over the past few years.
  • For example, if you read this article, one guy grabbed "e-.com", "e-.org", and "e-.net" for his e-commerce site. Hello, there's something wrong here: .org sites are supposed to be for non-profit organizations, not a commerce site.

    I agree with you (since I remember when .com, .org, and .net meant something), but I think it's a lost cause at this point. Try registering blanketyblank.com with NSI and they'll always say "why not get blanketyblank.net and blanketyblank.org, too?" Curse their oily hides!

    So, does anyone else get mildly irritated when they see URLs like anygivensunday.net [anygivensunday.net] advertised, or am I turning into a net old fogey? :)

    -jon ("'Any Given Sunday' isn't a networking company! oh, there go my cataracts!)

  • It doesn't really matter whether they knowingly took advantage of the problem. Like the guy registering e-.com/net/org said - he hopes he can appeal the decision to ICANN because it's too inconvenient to think of something longer.

    Consider this scenario:

    I setup and incorporate i-.com, an internet commerce consulting company. During the setup, I register i-.com as my domain name and spend thousands of dollars on corporate letterhead, envelopes, business cards, advertising, etc. All of these items specifically use i-.com as a moniker and/or internet address.

    NSI or ICANN discover that I was allowed to register the domain in error, and they revoke the domain name. I then hire a fancy, high-price, law firm to file suit for MILLIONS of dollars due to the inconvenience and costs associated with their error. An ignorant judge rules that ICANN has to return the disputed domain name to me because it is central to my corporate identity.

    SCARED YET???
  • Woops - you're right, I should read more closely before replying. Of course the X Consortium deserves the domain - they're the first thing that I think of. It's surprising that the domain didn't get grabbed for a porn site first, though!

  • I don't know about 2600.com or hp.com, but I've heard that one-letter domains were only allowed for a short time before they were disallowed. The x.com folks probably registered it during that short window.

  • It's actually 67 minus the dot and the TLD...
  • ICANN has been using the issue that trailing dash domains could be registered to infringe on other people's trademarks for much of their basis for revoking the 846 trailing dash domains.

    My answer is that is up to a court of law, not ICANN nor NSI.

    If ICANN is going to revoke trailing dash domains based just on the reason that they may cause confusion, then please revoke all domains that have dashes between each alphanumeric character or worse multiple dashes in a row.

    1. i-b-m.com [slashdot.org]
    2. s-e-x.com [slashdot.org]
    3. y-a-h-o-o.com [slashdot.org]
    4. d-r-u-g.com [slashdot.org]
    5. s--e--x.com [slashdot.org]
    6. f--k.com [slashdot.org]
    7. etc, etc.


    That would really help us trademark owners out - thanks!!

    See the problem of using the rationale of revoking domains just because they may cause confusion. There's many examples and if ICANN revokes trailing dash domains based on this reason alone, that may be a slippery slope to mass domain revocations in the future based on dubious reasons.
  • if it does go into a court of law, trailing-dash names will be thrown out. this is not because of copyright issues; it's because all parties involved-- ICANN, the new registars-- signed a _contract_ saying they would not register anything that ends in a dash. what is more, i'm pretty sure none of the registrars have contracts with their customers that don't say the registrar can revoke the domain name at any time. So beyond the RFC issues already mentioned by some repliers there _is_ a legal basis. If copyright issues were important here at _all_ then the individual domains infringing on copyrights would have been dealt with individually, there wouldn't have been mass revoking.

    if you had _read the article_ you would know this.
  • Id rather guess that this means that some ftp/telnet clients have to be upgraded. After all we are already short on domain names in some areas. Especially an the field of personal domains like johndoe.com there could be some relief if the "failure" would be made a standard.
  • >And of course there's the matter of people making
    >huge files available only by HTTP so that they're
    >almost impossible to get over anything except a
    >T1 or greater, and sometimes not even then.
    >(There's no resume capability that I'm aware of.)

    Hmmm...

    Have a look at RFC 2616 [faqs.org], "HTTP/1.1" and it's sections 3.12 (Range Units), 14.16 (Content-Range) and 14.35 (Range)...

    Also, try wget for resuming HTTP downloads, or GetRight or something similar if you're running windows... hell, even Netscape resumes downloading if the connection over which you were downloading a pr0n picture gets disconnected... *nudgenudgewinkwink*, *grin*

    (Score: -1, On-Topic)

    np: Autechre - Basscadubmx (Basscad EP)

    As always under permanent deconstruction.


  • wow what a big problem names with dashes at the

    end cause telnet and ftp to crash like it happens

    so often that it would matter ?!

    that article given as proof shows nothing and is

    crap.
  • meaning in UNIX??? Never heard of that one.

    Even a leading dash shouldn't be a problem...

    telnet -- -e.com

  • by Anonymous Coward
    Look at the URL for the "lunar eclipse" story (...article.pl?sid=00/01/07/...). It was actually posted yesterday, and set to be displayed at 4:00 PM (EST) today. This happens all the time - articles are received, but delayed for a day or two. Take a look at this article - Lucasfilm Explains Lack Of TPM DVD [slashdot.org]. It is from the 7th, but it won't be "posted" until 8:00 AM tomorrow. I've seen some articles delayed by over a week.
  • Yes, it seems to be a standard problem wherever something tangible is allocated w/o rigid rules in places. The fee involved must be low enough so that the average individual/small company can afford it, but a fee that is that low is virtually free to a mega-company. It would be stupid for them NOT to buy all the duplicates
  • It should still be first come, first served. So if Joe Disney got disney.per fair and square, then Susan Disney has no grounds.

    But, .per implies a personal page; say if Walt Dinsey was alive and got disney.per, but all it was was a redirect to disney.com, there are grounds for a lawsuit for squatting. On the other hand, if he had his personal home page there, that's different.

  • My suggestion was not that Aussie users would be limited to Aussie sites, just that by default, if you types in "www.bigbusiness.com" without any country modifier, you'd be sent first to www.bigbusiness.com.au. If you really wanted "www.bigbusiness.com.us", you'd just have to type that explicitly.

    And yes, I do consider etoy.com and etoys.com to be a domain name problem. We should have had more TLD years ago before e-commerce got here, and thus, etoy.com would most likely be etoy.arts (or more appropriately, etoy.arts.ch). However, because 'we' waited, etoy.com had to stay. Mind you, I think etoyS.com is wrong in this case, but the distasterous state of the DNS system is partically at fault as well.

  • This naming scheme makes a lot of sense to me, but it would be a real bitch to remember domain names like this, not to mention the fact that once you have 40 different trademark areas, and god knows how many countries, instead of having to know only [com|net|edu|org] and so on, you have to know all of those suffixes and trademark areas just to know if the domain name is valid. Like, I think most geeks would recognize that

    fooburger.food.mx

    is a site in mexico, but not everybody does.

    My main concern is that the more distinctions you have moving AWAY from [com|org|net|edu] the more your are taking a domain name and making it into something that can have as many combos as a dotted quad. And if a domain names can be as complicated to remember as dotted quads with ever increasing numbers of trademark domains and country codes, then what's the point of having domain names?

  • So hosting a website is now the only legitimate use for a domain? I (obviously) happen to think there's nothing wrong with using a domain just for good old email.
  • Except that one article about this indicates that people were registring things like "microsoft-.com" - I have the feeling these people were living on the edge and I would doubt that they would be considered "the screwed", more "the screwees"
  • It's surprising that the domain didn't get grabbed for a porn site first, though!

    [Puts on his best imitation old-man voice]
    Back in the day, when the X consortium hadn't sold out to misleadingly named Open Software Foundation and were able to register the one-letter x.org domain, then the Internet was a much kinder, gentler, and above all, smarter place:

    USENET was a usable, indeed friendly and invaluable, discussion forum

    SPAM was unheard of and flamed mercilessly (and for quite some time successfully) out of existence

    The internic existed for the good of the net, not its own sleazy pocketbook.

    porn was limited to the appropriate USENET groups. In the early days of the web porn sights didn't hijack your browser and fill your screen with a borderless window showing two men sucking cock (or some other equally offensive thing you had absolutely no interest in seeing) with the sole means of getting out of it to exit the browser altogether (if you're lucky and don't have to exit the windowing system altogether). I don't know who to flame more for the current state of affairs, the porn fucks who do this or netscape's asinine extentions to html (javascript and the like) that gave them the means[1]. Both suck much like the image I described earlier, but I digress.

    The average IQ of the netizen was a three digit numeral, rather than the one to two digits we see today.

    Standards were defined in a technically reasoned and well thought out means via the IETF, rather than having them imposed by large companies (Netscape, M$) or sleazy OSI committees who have sold themselves like cheap whores to various corporate special interests.

    [1]For the record, disabling javascript does not prevent this behavior. Don't type in whitehouse.com by mistake ...

  • Uh ok, Linux must be a BROKEN OS too. Seeing as it resolves microsoft-.com and 3com.com.

    You must have a different "Linux" then I do. First of all, the RFC doesn't prevent URL's from starting with a number, just a "-". Second, I tried from my Linux box, and 3com.com worked, as it should. However, microsoft-.com failed, just like it should. On the other hand, from Windows 98, microsoft-.com resolves. Which it shouldn't.

    I happen to be a programmer. I know in this case it shouldn't matter that Microsoft doesn't handle invalid URL's because there should never be any. But yet a well written program should *always* check for impossible results. You may be able to say, "well, my program will never get bad data", but it *always* happens, and you should always be prepared to deal with it.

    If Microsoft doesn't properly validate input in the browser, then how can we be sure that Microsoft is properly validating input anywhere else? Maybe that is the reason why Windows has the many problems that it does.

    -Brent
  • I think that states should REQUIRE people to obtain a computer operators license before they're allowed to purchase any computer.

    Simple stuff so that people understand that it's NOT ok to say "Yeah, I have a computer with 32 RAMs of memory, and I want to add more megabytes because I have enough RAMs, but this program says it needs 64 megabytes to run."

    All I want is for people to have at least a LIMITED understanding of the technology.

    LK
  • It doesn't surprise me that this is what happens when more outsiders join the club. We're letting the suits take over something that was designed by, and until 5 years ago exclusively populated by geeks.

    Next we'll be hearing about "Why isn't there a way to just 'get a domain name' by changing your machine's name under windows?"

    LK
  • responded to me to wit:
    Can you explain how this is supposed to work, though? If you create a bunch of additional top-level domains (let's say *.arts, *.firm, *.biz, *.dot, *.sucks) someone like Disney is going to want to register their trademarks in all those domains.

    True, but I'm not so concerned with these pre-existing trademark issues. Of course somebody registering mickeymouse.biz is going to run into legal problems.

    What I'm more worried about are the situations where Smith Webventures Inc. registers smith.com, and then proceeds to lawyer-letter smith.net and smith.org into submission, somewhat along the lines of the ongoing Leonardo case, or the eToys.com/Etoy.com situation. It's the johnny-come-latelies who probably will NOT become lasting, global trademarks, but whose VC money allows them to afford flashy lawyers, who are going to do the majority of this kind of domain blood-fighting.

    I'm not saying create three or six new domains; probably the only way to solve this is to allow hundreds or thousands of new TLDs, which would not only make it impossible for any but the most ardent trademark borderline-pissers to go everywhere, but would eliminate the now (and increasingly) common complaint that there is "consumer confusion" -- the basis of most trademark rulings. Right now, everyone has been lulled into believing that finding the six letters "d i s n e y" somewhere automatically means that Disney Corp. owns or should own that internet property. That's fine for Walt and his progeny, but what about Joe Disney, local printer, down the street? Isn't he deserving of the use of his name somehow? That's what I want to protect.

    The many-many TLD idea would also make it possible for the guy who has a business (or even non-business) idea tomorrow to own a domain name that communicates it without having to go to 200 characters or a $2 million investment before opening his doors.

    I'm not saying I have the answers, but the current inaction isn't helping things any.
    ----
  • I said it wasn't ICANN's fault.

    I didn't say it wasn't NSI's fault. It was the fault of NSI and the domain registrars jointly. And they weren't checking (probably just a case of somebody writing a simple perl filter, but without checking the appropriate RFC), and now they are.
    ----
  • I know, I could go look at the source code, but for the benefit of /. readers, could someone explain why a dash at the end of a domain name segment would break telnet and ftp? I understand that a dash at the beginning might be interpreted as a command-line parameter.
  • DHartung (dhartung@spamblocker.mcs.net) wrote:
    I'm not saying create three or six new domains; probably the only way to solve this is to allow hundreds or thousands of new TLDs, which would not only make it impossible for any but the most ardent trademark borderline-pissers to go everywhere
    Actually, this sounds like a really good thought. If every permutation of three letters was a valid TLD, then it might very well completely swamp that "let's register *all* of them" impulse.

  • It's not looking too good for people with trailing dash domains, but I feel if ICANN follows through on requiring the mass revocation of those domains, they should fix the "races.com" domain registration while they're at it.

    Quote from ICANN webpage regarding the trailing hyphans:
    http://www.icann.org/nsi/trailing-hyp hens.htm [icann.org]

    "... They also provide that those registering domain names must agree to cancellation of the registration in the event of a registry or registrar mistake, and in the case of every one of the trailing-hyphen names the registering party did in fact have such an agreement."

    So why hasn't "races.com" been revoked yet and the registration corrected either back to the original owner or the the correct owner John McLanahan???

    In the case of "races.com", there was certainly a registrar mistake and the various parties (NSI Registry, NSI Registrar, Register.com) agree this to be true so when will it be corrected???

    Or am I misreading the sentence from ICANN's website that states:
    "They [the agreements] also provide that those registering domain names [Registrars] must agree to cancellation of the registration in the event of a registry or registrar mistake, ..."

    Note the important word REGISTRAR!!!! So while some like NSI have claimed John McLanahan is SOL, it appears that ICANN is either not aware of the "races.com" situation or doesn't follow it's own rules of correcting such mistakes.

    For a backgrounder on how "races.com" was lost, see this link:
    http://www.wired.com/news/prin t/0,1294,32974,00.html [wired.com]

    I can only hope ICANN, NSI, and/or Register.com do the right thing and restore the "races.com" domain back to the proper owner; and restore people's confidence in the domain name system. Imagine if "business.com" had been lost during a domain transfer...that's exactly what happened with "races.com"!!
  • [/home/fvw] telnet www.microsoft-.com
    www.microsoft-.com: Unknown server error
    [/home/fvw]
  • The registrars are != to the DNS system itself. Yes, they play a very important and necessary (at this point in time, anyway) role in it's functioning. They are the insertion point.
    Now, DNS servers (nameservers) at this point, anyway, follow a rather common concept of (more or less quoted from the Bat book (sendmail)
    "Be conservative in what you do and liberal in what you expect from others."
    It applies to sendmail, but also applies to other concepts. Many nameservers will relay erroneous information, but that doesn't mean it should be there in the first place.
    The standards say *NO* trailing - on a domain.
    So.. the registrars shouldn't be registering them.

    Someone pointed out in another post under this article that technically a domain can contain a trailing -, but cannot be the target of an A, MX, or several other record types.
    Though this is quite possibly true, it is also true that the global DNS system at large is not used for all the things it was designed for.
    (ie: all IN records.... of course, because it's in the internet domain, but what else would it be for nowadays?)
  • Is there any good reason any more to not allow the registration of infinite TLD's?
    ...
    Large websites could be organized by TLD instead of directory. IBM could have WWW.IBM.SALES for sales, and WWW.IBM.SUPPORT for help, and WWW.IBM.NYSE for investor information.

    That wouldn't solve the problem at all, would it? That would mean "IBM" owns all of domains IBM.TLD, for all possible TLDs. Yes, you have created more space, but not where it matters: the part in front of the TLD. Not to mention the headaches of 'foo.com', 'foo.net', 'foo.org' and all the 'foo.xx's in various countries sueing each other over the rights of using 'foo.sales' and 'foo.support'.

    But even creating an infinite number of TLDs, and have different entities take 'foo.shop', 'foo.store', 'foo.buy', etc will not solve the problem. Look at etoy vs etoys. The claim of etoys is the confusion of a similar name. You'd think that they let someone else take etoys.buy, etoys.toy or etoys.comm if they can prevent it?

    The current problem with the DNS name space isn't a technical one - it's a social one. A technical solution of just adding more TLDs isn't going to solve the problem.

    -- Abigail

  • I expect that any telnet client that allows telnetting to such a domain name is not implementing the standards for domain names correctly

    I wouldn't expect any telnet or ftp client to do domainname lookups themselves. That's why we have gethostbyname(3), don't we?

    However, typical RFC standards recommend "be conservative in what you send, be liberal in what you accept". I very much doubt an RFC says a client MUST NOT be able to connect to badly formatted hostname. It probably doesn't even say the client SHOULD NOT be able to connect.

    -- Abigail

  • Then if the Disney corporation registers disney.per, an individual with the last name of Disney should be able to take them to court and sue them for wrongfully and maliciously registering a domain name that they're not entitled to.

    But what if Walt still had been alive? And besides, there's probably more than one person named Disney. Can Joe Disney sue Mary Disney over the right to use 'disney.per'? What's going to happen these new TLDs come into existence, and withing the hour, one million Koreans claim 'kim.per'?

    -- Abigail

  • First, as I explain in another post in this disucssion, e-.com or microsoft-.com are not illegal domain names. Just read RFC1035 [isi.edu]: the title of section 2.3.1 is ``Preferred name syntax'': this is a SHOULD, not a MUST.

    If someone decides to register this domain, it's their problem. If it breaks programs like TELNET, it's also their problem (``their'' refers to the people who registered, not to the programs): they took the risk to register that domain, knowing that they might have problems, and if their customers get angry because they can't access the domain, it't their problem.

    The programs SHOULD, according to the RFC, do the best to be ``liberal in what they accept'', and accept all the names they can to pass them to the resolver library. The resolver library SHOULD accept any kind of characters, binary characters included, and pass them verbatim to the name servers (they shouldn't even change the letter case, only the nameservers are permitted to make the final decision on this subject).

    Within their own domain, people are permitted to do whatever they want, including using binary characters in (sub)domain names, not being case-insensitive, or any other stupid thing on the same line. It will break everything, but, again, it's their problem.

    I agree with the ICANN's decision to register this. Nowhere in the RFC's does it say they may not (at least, as far as I know). All this, as far as they're (to be) concerned, is ``somebody else's problem''. Just like it is if the IP address you give them as primary nameserver is invalid or does not work.

    The other point is RFC1591 [isi.edu], which (meta-)specifies the way the three-letter TLD's are organized. Note in particular that nowhere in it is it stated that the .org domain is for non-profit organizations, contrary to what is frequently claimed. But the ICANN is to be blamed for not respecting this RFC on several counts (notably for the .net domain; also, something like un.org should be un.int).

    I whish this ``www.[any word].com'' nonsense would stop. My suggested solution would be to invent another, better adapted, distributed data base, to transform a word or phrase to a URL, call it, say, ``true names''; then add a truename:// URL scheme, which gets relocated using the ``true names'' database to the correct URL. Integrate that scheme in every popular browser, and make it the default URL scheme. Then DNS names can become again what they are supposed to be: computer names, not resource names. Admittedly, I am only suggesting displacing the problem, but maybe the other database I mention can be better attuned to the kind of problems we have with the DNS, and which the DNS was not designed to handle.

  • Help increase the number of domains available to small organizations that just don't care that much (yet) about protecting a name (e.g. scat.arts, and scat.com could be, respectively some jazz singers and a porn site without causing too much confusion).

    Depending on the social and political climate (especially near ICANN et al), scat.com and scat.arts could be reversed from the order you suggest. After all, what is art?

    Yes, this scares me. But only a little.

  • Frankly, I don't care for ICANN's crappy, archaic rules that probably don't matter anymore. It's good to have standards, as long as you stick to them, but they don't do it very well. They've already broken a few of them by allowing numerals as the first character in a domain name (the @ host, e.g. "2600.com" is technically invalid, DNS-wise), as well as single character domain names.

    Try again. Leading numerals in domain name components have been valid since October 1989, per RFC 1123:

    2.1 Host Names and Numbers

    The syntax of a legal Internet host name was specified in RFC-952 [DNS:4]. One aspect of host name syntax is hereby changed: the restriction on the first character is relaxed to allow either a letter or a digit. Host software MUST support this more liberal syntax.


    I can find nowhere that requires that domain names are required to have at least two characters - can you cite an RFC for that one?
  • A lawyer for one unhappy consumer who registered more than 100 of these new domains said the governing bodies could have a difficult time proving the recent glitch was a mistake, as it took them three months to discover the error.

    I have no sympathy for this person. This is an obvious case of squatting. Excuse my ignorance, but doesn't Internic have a policy against that sort of behaviour anyway?



    ----
  • Finally, and what I think is really important right now is to actively use the country code in domains. Browsers can easily be configured or patched to automatically end .com and the other TLD's in the appropriate country code (.us, etc) Yes, this means that by default, a person in the UK would have to go "www.apple.com.us", but this is necessary to remove the American-ization of the Internet, and would limit domain name disputes to within countries only (no etoys vs etoy problems).

    This would not de-Americanize the internet, but instead de-internationalize the internet, leaving it as only a shadow of what it is now. Three situations:

    What if someone such as myself in Canada wanted to buy something off of an American site such as ebay. Unfortuatally i end up getting another site from Canada, perhapes the hbc online store. I want an ebay, not a department store. What if i wanted a site in France, but i didn't know it was in that country, what do i do now.

    What if i am a company based in Canada, however i ship product anywhere. I now must register my name in every country, dealing with language bariers, stupid name server systems (your suggestion), and corrupt people wishing to charge me $20000 because my name is known in other counties. Now i am an international free software project, i hope i get a grant soon.

    I am a well known Canadian company selling to the US and UK. Unfortuatally an enterprising person has registered my name in those country and has but up a porn site. When someone in that country tries to go to my site they are instead taken to a porn site. This looks bad.

    The internet is international. It is also dominated by the US, but there are reasons for this, and if you don't like it, start your own network and only let those who are america-phobic on it. An international network is useful, but will be dominated by the countries with the largest population/use, this is true of everything.
    Perhaps you should look into how to get a domain in Canada, and then look at the situation with the generic tlds, it really changes your outlook.


  • So, when you find a bug in a client you upgrade all other clients and make it a standard?

    Of course, silly! Then it becomes a feature. Say it with me - fee-chur!

    ======
    "Rex unto my cleeb, and thou shalt have everlasting blort." - Zorp 3:16

  • Probably someone beat me to this, but:

    maciek@jabba:~$ host microsoft-.com
    microsoft-.com A 209.207.246.170
    maciek@jabba:~$ ping microsoft-.com
    ping: unknown host microsoft-.com
    maciek@jabba:~$ nslookup microsoft-.com
    Server: localhost
    Address: 127.0.0.1

    Non-authoritative answer:
    Name: microsoft-.com
    Address: 209.207.246.170

    maciek@jabba:~$

    In other words, not following RFCs results in non-deterministic behavior.

  • The problem isn't just for FTPing and Telneting. It's the fact that they (ICANN, etc) weren't suppost to allow people to register domains starting or ending in slashes...Read the article.. =]
    It may not be hurting someone, but if you were MS, would you want someone else to register microsoft-.com? That was one of the domains registered.
  • The requested URL could not be retrieved

    While trying to retrieve the URL: http://microsoft-.com/
    The following error was encountered:
    Unable to determine IP address from host name for microsoft-.com
    The dnsserver returned:
    DNS Domain 'microsoft-.com' is invalid: Non recoverable errors.
    This means that:
    The cache was not able to resolve the hostname presented in the URL.
    Check if the address is correct.

    Generated Sun, 09 Jan 2000 06:47:28 GMT by xxxxx.com (Squid/2.2.STABLE5)


    Non-RFC compliant names like this do not resolve on ISC BIND v8.5.5pl5, nor many others (I suspect). Not to mention the fact that most proxies will also kill this name (or otherwise malfunction). That's why I find it funny that one fellow complained that this was an excuse. That's like saying the health risks of lead paint are just an excuse to stop honest business men from selling it to schools, etc.
    ---
  • It was revoked because trailing/leading dashes break several RFCs, and hundreds of implementations. I can't resolve any of those trailing dash domains (ISC BIND v8.5.5.pl5).

    This has nothing to do with copyright :-)
    ---
  • Oy. Lot of misinformation here.

    1. ICANN didn't screw up, it didn't do anything - it's like that.

    2. A bug crept into the NSI SRS system that allowed trailing dash domain names. So the registrars registered a bunch of them.

    3. If you read the RFC's very carefully (or see ISC's posting to .domains on usenet) you'll see a trailing dash domain is *not* illegal. But it cannot be the taget of an A, NS or MX record, so hile not illegal it's not usable, either.

    IMO, things like this are not newsworthy. The real screwing to be had is by the trademark contingency. That'll keep us plenty busy this year ... and next, probably, as we begin to see some egregous abuses inder the ICANN UDRP and WIPO.

  • With one of them registering microsoft-.com and another commenting that short domain names being hard to come by, I have to wonder if at least some of them fully realized that they were exploiting a mistake when they registered those names. The guy who registered e-.com may not have known, and probably intended no harm, but registering a domain name using someone else's trademark is highly questionable squatting. Even if I were inclined to do it, I don't think I would do it to anyone who could afford the legal muscle to bankrupt me.
  • Really? I thought that the "digit may not be the first character of a label" had been removed.

    for example, I've got http://4trak.net/cindii [4trak.net]

    The only problem I've ever had with it is some web forms that reject email addresses like cindii@4trak.net. nigel
  • I originally liked the idea of more TLDs. But the problem now is that every company seems to want to register the .net and .org versions of their .com, and will take anyone to court who dares to use one of the other versions. I remember a case a few years back with mit.org, a not for profit group that setup internet connections for home-bound people. Mass. Institute of Technology slapped them with a huge lawsuit and demanded they give the name up... despite the fact that their web site clearly explained that it wasn't the school. As long as this is the prevailing corporate attitude more TLDs will not expand the namespace any, they will just earn the registrars more money as corporations race to acquire their name under every last TLD.

    It really defeats the purpose of TLDs. Why have them at all?
  • Ok so they messed up. But this is relaivly minor compared to having one company the sole source for domain names.

    The important part is that they are fixing it. Hopefully this will be the worst problem that shows up and competition will continue.
  • This has nothing to do with what the applications will accept. This is a unix issue, ftp and telnet under linux are most commonly used in their command line form, the starting or trailing dash have special meanings on the unix command line that would force the string to be interprited differently, this is not a simple matter of the software not handling it correctly.
  • The problem with www.macdonalds.food.us is not that it is hard for geeks to remember, but it is hard for people to remember. There have been comments posted on slashdot in the past about "chunking," the process by which our brain keeps information together. www.company.com is "chunked" and the www and .com are ingrained in people's minds. Getting Joe Blow or my parents to remember .comp.us or .food.us would destroy their chunking, and would destroy the burgeoning growth of the internet because it is (a) innocuous and (b) trendy. www.macdonalds.food.us doesn't have the ring that www.mcwebsite.com has.
  • It looks like there's a site still up, and it has a whole bunch of links to sites, which all have something that doesn't really look good for the domainname system/icann/etc.

    Just thought some people would like to know.

  • Oh, ye of little imagination. Here are a few suggestions, all unregistered. Watch them disappear now that they've been posted.
    • penaltynet.com
    • slashdotsucks.com
    • gatessucks.com
    • carlsile.com
    • komarr.com
    • cetaganda.com
    • subtreasury.com
    • xlaser.com
  • Actually, only x.com is illegal, according to the relevant RFCs. RFC 1123 [faqs.org] states:

    The syntax of a legal Internet host name was specified in RFC-952 [DNS:4]. One aspect of host name syntax is hereby changed: the restriction on the first character is relaxed to allow either a letter or a digit. Host software MUST support this more liberal syntax.

    So, 2600.org is perfectly fine.

    RFC 952 [faqs.org] states:

    1. A "name" (Net, Host, Gateway, or Domain name) is a text string up to 24 characters drawn from the alphabet (A-Z), digits (0-9), minus sign (-), and period (.). Note that periods are only allowed when they serve to delimit components of "domain style names". (See RFC-921, "Domain Name System Implementation Schedule", for background). No blank or space characters are permitted as part of a name. No distinction is made between upper and lower case. The first character must be an alpha character. The last character must not be a minus sign or period. Single character names or nicknames are not allowed.

    So any length between two and twenty-four characters is okay, and hp.com is fine. How x.com was registered is beyond me, and serves as an illustration of how network solutions never really was very good at its job.

  • Of course, it could be argued that people who are opening domains on the Internet should be familiar with the RFCs, and the customs, traditions, and manners of the community. That would eliminate most of the braindead behavior we see on a daily basis.

    That having been said, there are two larger issues here.

    1) We have a massive congestion problem. There's a problem with "cybersquatting," and there's a problem with conflicting companies, people, organizations, etc. of the same name.

    2) The majority of the people who are using the Internet, as well as the majority of the people administering and opening sites these days don't have the first clue how anything works. That's bad, but what's worse is that they don't care, and they don't want to learn.

    I don't know how to fix this, really. One way would be to junk the DNS system completely and go to something which is vaguely similar to a Yellow Pages, but that has its own massive problems, most of which are blatently obvious so I won't go into them here.

    The entire problem has been complicated by people registering domains which have nothing to do with their company names, and not knowing about or not caring about the TLD which they've put their domain in. If people can't figure out the difference between the various TLDs now, what makes us think that they'll figure them out or care about them if we got a system which was actually somewhat complicated?

    Things have gotten bad enough that I'm tempted to suggest that a lot of the things which we use need to be either redesigned or sanity enforced in their use. This includes things like HTML, which has all sorts of browser-specific, platform-specific, OS-specific trash added to it now. This includes the mail system, which could really benefit from some kind of reputation capital system or something being added to cut down on spam, junk email, and to improve mailing list quality. Web browsers in general could use some help. And of course there's the matter of people making huge files available only by HTTP so that they're almost impossible to get over anything except a T1 or greater, and sometimes not even then. (There's no resume capability that I'm aware of.)

    Face it. The Internet is a great thing, but it's gone straight to hell and it needs serious help.

    Just remember always the Wizard's First Rule:

    Wizard's First Rule: People are stupid.

    I'm sorry to say that clues must be eventually enforced, one of these days. If we don't do it, sooner or later it will be done by force of law with anti-spam legislation, domain name legislation, copyright and trademark suits, and other things, and the situation will actually be worse.

  • Such domain names, violate (to my knowledge) rfc standarts. If the "industry" is allowed to change such standarts, we will have a non-functioning Internet within a while.

    See HTML how this language has been bent with browsertags which only work in a _single_ browser.

    These standarts have been written so things are kept functioning.

    It does not matter wheter telnet or ftp are the only two services which are affected by this.

    Changing a variable in an equation will yield an unpredictable ammount results.

    -NetPace

    --
    If life is a game... Who is leading the highscore?
    --
  • They just changed the rules; you can now register domains of up to 64 characters. Where have you been?

    - A.P.
    --


    "One World, one Web, one Program" - Microsoft promotional ad

  • by doomy ( 7461 ) on Saturday January 08, 2000 @03:05PM (#1390670) Homepage Journal
    Actually it was NetSol's incompetence that it let domain names be registered without making sure those names complied to specifications. I read this story on news.com 2 days ago regarding this..

    Network Solutions' (NSI) registry accepted about 800 domain names containing a hyphen at the end or the beginning of an address. But such names have long been prohibited and therefore should be recaptured, said Michael Roberts, president of the Internet Corp. for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN).

    "It was a mistake," Roberts said today. "The software was not rejecting the names, but that was fixed earlier this week."

    The first such name was registered Nov. 4, leaving some consumers wondering why it took so long to discover the problem.

    Roberts explained that the system is automated and does not involve people who would have been able to detect the problem sooner.

    In an agreement with ICANN, NSI, which operates the single registry system, and about 23 other approved registrars that feed into that system prohibit the trailing hyphens. The agreement also gives power to the companies to revoke domains that have been mistakenly sold, Roberts said.

    Only a few of the approved registrars failed to put a filtering device in their systems, which allowed the unauthorized domains to sneak through, said Don Telage, NSI's registry policy spokesman.

    San Francisco-based Internet Domain Registrars was one of the companies that failed to implement the filter, and as a result, it unknowingly registered about 400 bad addresses, said Paul Lum, the company's general manager.

    Lum said he was relying on NSI's security system to catch any characters not allowed in a domain, such as an exclamation point, dollar sign and a trailing or leading hyphen.

    Early Monday, he learned it was Internet Domain's responsibility to program its own filter. Now the company is left with the unpleasant task of reimbursing a total of $25,000 to those who registered the new domains.

    The fiasco will not likely cause a customer-relations problem for Internet Domain, Lum said. Instead he views the situation as evidence that clever Net addresses are highly sought after.

    "There is too much pent-up demand for good domain names," he said. "Even though the hyphen isn't very attractive, short names are still preferred."

    A lawyer for one unhappy consumer who registered more than 100 of these new domains said the governing bodies could have a difficult time proving the recent glitch was a mistake, as it took them three months to discover the error.

    The rest of this story could be read here [cnet.com]. Please don't jump to conclusion without getting the full story.


    --
  • by doom ( 14564 ) <doom@kzsu.stanford.edu> on Saturday January 08, 2000 @01:51PM (#1390671) Homepage Journal
    DHartung (dhartung@spamblocker.mcs.net) wrote:
    Hopefully this incident will give ICANN a kick in the pants as far as moving on to the next phase. There need to be more TLDs, and there need to be rules that allow those TLDs to expand the domain name universe, not just give trademark-grabbers more TLDs to register theirs in.
    Can you explain how this is supposed to work, though? If you create a bunch of additional top-level domains (let's say *.arts, *.firm, *.biz, *.dot, *.sucks) someone like Disney is going to want to register their trademarks in all those domains. Whether or not they're legally required to do so to protect their trademark, that's what they're going to want, just to make it easy for people to find them.

    This seems like a classic case of techies missing the point: "Oh, running out of domains? Let's add more." But it isn't domainspace that's crowded, it's the trademark namespace...

    On the other hand, some new TLDs would:

    • Help increase the number of domains available to small organizations that just don't care that much (yet) about protecting a name (e.g. scat.arts, and scat.com could be, respectively some jazz singers and a porn site without causing too much confusion).
    • Give organizations like InterNIC a way to soak the big boys for a little bit of cash for the sake of protecting their trademarks. Look at it like a progressive tax: Small orgs get to pay just *once*, but the big ones feel like they have to pay dozens of times.
  • Because it violates the RFC defining what a domain name should look like, and many pieces of software are written intelligently enough that they know "hey, that's not valid!" and reject it -- exactly as they should. D
  • by SEWilco ( 27983 ) on Saturday January 08, 2000 @03:48PM (#1390673) Journal
    Darn, no SlashDotDash.
  • by David A. Madore ( 30444 ) on Sunday January 09, 2000 @11:28AM (#1390674) Homepage

    The reference is RFC1035 [isi.edu] (``Domain Names — Implementation and Specification'') by Mockapetris. But read it carefully: the section 2.3.1 is entitled ``Preferred name syntax'' (emphasis is mine). There is nothing illegal about names not following this convention; in fact, RFC1035 domain names can contain arbitrary characters, even binary (including the dot character, the null character, and mixed case!). The RFC essentially restates the golden rule: be liberal in what you accept and conservative in what you send (i.e. use the suggested conventions if possible when creating domain names, but be prepared to accept any kind of data when you receive a domain name). The RFC suggests the conventions you name precisely for compatibility with mail and TELNET (see the notes at the beginning of section 2.3.1), so you are putting the cart before the horses (``illegal'' names are ``illegal'' because they break TELNET, not the other way around).

    A domain name is not supposed to start with a digit, but this rule is violated in the very RFC for the IN-ADDR.ARPA domain. Arguably, this is not a problem because you can't TELNET directly to an IN-ADDR.ARPA domain host (I find it rather unfortunate that I can't type telnet t.z.y.x.in-addr-arpa as a substitute for telnet x.y.z.t, I've never understood why that is disallowed).

    I wonder, with all the fad on Unicode [unicode.org], whether Unicode characters will end up being allowed in domain names. Then every trademark-owning company would rush to register their name in every possible script. Or, worse even, get their logo added to the Unicode tables and register the <logo>.com domain. Fortunately, the Unicode Consortium has decided never to include logos in the official Unicode tables (but they might get added in the user-reserved areas if some vendor (i.e. Micro$oft) is influential enough to provide a kind of standard in this domain). Imagine people not knowing how to write any more, just choosing the company's logo in a huge table, and pasting it in the location bar of their browser...

  • by LocalYokel ( 85558 ) on Saturday January 08, 2000 @11:41PM (#1390675) Homepage Journal

    When creating a standard or a specification, it's important to make rules and stick to them -- the perils of changing them later are many. However, it's just as important to make rules that don't suck in the first place, because they will get broken.

    The mail servers for the ISP I used to work for have dozens of functioning "illegal" usernames that are either longer than eight characters or begin with a numeral. There are even a few with the ampersand character (&) that also work, though they do behave strangely in finger queries. Despite the fact they knew it was technically invalid, being a fledgling company eager to please (times sure have changed there), they let it happen. Future upgrades of Slackware prevented any more invalid accounts from being created, however. I'm of the opinion that it was USERADD acting as the enforcer -- if the kernel does it, wouldn't that mean that it plays with a different set of rules internally than it does externally?

    In the case of Linux, no matter what you do, it's a Bad Thing©. You can continue to use the same standard and allow "fudging" without acknowledging that it seems to work "out of spec", which IMO is the Worst Thing©, you can break compatibility for the sake of a standard, or you can drop the archaic, unpopular rules that don't seem to make a bit of difference -- or do they?

    Frankly, I don't care for ICANN's crappy, archaic rules that probably don't matter anymore. It's good to have standards, as long as you stick to them, but they don't do it very well. They've already broken a few of them by allowing numerals as the first character in a domain name (the @ host, e.g. "2600.com" is technically invalid, DNS-wise), as well as single character domain names.

    Steadily, all of the rules will erode as the greed of registrars pressures the ICANN for more domains to sell. The "unroutable" Class A netblocks at the upper and lower ends will probably fall sometime soon too, but at least it will be out of necessity. Just like everything else drawn up decades ago, the "impossible" becomes well within reach...

    If you've actually read all the way through this, I'm sorry you put up with my rambling for so long...

    --

  • by Masem ( 1171 ) on Saturday January 08, 2000 @02:37PM (#1390676)
    I strongly believe that with or without new TLD, there needs to be resistrictions on what domain names you can register either as an individual.

    For example, if you read this article, one guy grabbed "e-.com", "e-.org", and "e-.net" for his e-commerce site. Hello, there's something wrong here: .org sites are supposed to be for non-profit organizations, not a commerce site.

    We need to education both IT managers and the general public that there is a significant difference between a .com and a .net address. If that understand was in place across the planet, then there should be no confusion between sites such as "whitehouse.gov" and "whitehouse.com", or "apple.com" and "apple.org". But, because we *know* people are stupid, they feel they have to do this.

    IF people were intelligent enough to recongize this, then the next step would be to prevent any person or group to own the same name in any more than one TLD, unless sufficient cause is show (and that cause does NOT include trademark infrindgement). With the above in place, anyone would recognize that "apple.org" is not Apple Corp, but some organization that might deal with apples or Apples. Therefore, Apple would not have to grab all the domains in every TLD.

    Then, using internationally determined standards, the next step would be to limit the registration of certain TLDs to appropriate people. .com and .biz to registered profit businesses, .net with the network infrastructure, etc.

    Finally, and what I think is really important right now is to actively use the country code in domains. Browsers can easily be configured or patched to automatically end .com and the other TLD's in the appropriate country code (.us, etc) Yes, this means that by default, a person in the UK would have to go "www.apple.com.us", but this is necessary to remove the American-ization of the Internet, and would limit domain name disputes to within countries only (no etoys vs etoy problems).

    But public education is the most important thing. I watch game shows which will generally have a higher cut of people than the rest, and it amazing me how dense they come to computer terms. They don't try to learn how it understands, they just want it to work. We need to actively promote education; I know that I will be trying to teach my mom the fundamentals of using her new computer rather than running through a simple list of steps just to type a letter. I'll try to apply the same to the internet stuff. But everyone needs to learn this. While we as the john doe internet surfer is still ignorant of how domain names work, IT managers are going to suck up all those domains for no real go reason.

    Of course, the other option would be to increase the cost of registering domains, but this would hurt more than help.

  • by DHartung ( 13689 ) on Saturday January 08, 2000 @01:14PM (#1390677) Homepage
    It's egregious to attribute this to ICANN and say that the cynics were right. Of course there will be small problems with any distributed system. The fault here, though, lays with the registrars who improperly registered names that shouldn't have existed. It's ironic that NetSol ends up being the good guy here (from one standpoint only, of course, not the domain owners' by a long shot!).

    Hopefully this incident will give ICANN a kick in the pants as far as moving on to the next phase. There need to be more TLDs, and there need to be rules that allow those TLDs to expand the domain name universe, not just give trademark-grabbers more TLDs to register theirs in. The situation right now is getting ridiculous.
    ----
  • by weave ( 48069 ) on Saturday January 08, 2000 @04:56PM (#1390678) Journal
    There's been several messages in this thread about the insanity with DNS names and that having more TLDs won't solve jack because trademark owners will just register in every TLD they can.

    What's even more nuts is what is happening in the toll free number area. Large companies with 800 numbers (like 800-FLOWERS) just *had* to duplicate their numbers in 888, then 877 and you can bet when 866, 855, 844, 833, and 822 toll free "area codes" are eventually open, those will be duplicated too.

    Quite a lot of discussion on this topic has been going on in comp.dcom.telecom for a few years now.

  • by starman97 ( 29863 ) on Saturday January 08, 2000 @04:10PM (#1390679)
    The only way that makes sense for trademark issues is to create a TLD for each tradmark field, there are about 40 of them. Then add a country code since envery country does not have the same system of tradmard classification. So, for example ,
    www.macdonalds.food.us would sell Big Macs,
    www.macdonalds.farm.us would do the EIEIO thing..
    and etoys.merchant.us would leave etoy.art.uk alone.
    There would be room for apple.comp.us and apple.music.uk and apple.food.* and apple.electronic.uk could be Apple Computer's UK site depending on how the UK/EU does it's Trademark classifications.
  • by slashdot-me ( 40891 ) on Saturday January 08, 2000 @01:29PM (#1390680)
    It breaks various programs because it is an ILLEGAL name. (I think the standards have changed since the old days and are a bit more flexible). However, it is still recommended that domain names have the following form:

    A domain name is a sequence of labels seperated by dots '.'

    A label is a sequence of letters 'a..z', digits '0..9', and hyphens '-'. A digit may not be the first character of a label. A hyphen may not be the first or last character of a label. A label must be less than 64 characters in length.

    Ryan

"Irrigation of the land with sewater desalinated by fusion power is ancient. It's called 'rain'." -- Michael McClary, in alt.fusion

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