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China Snubs Verisign In Domain Tussle 115

cswiii writes: "According to C/NET, Beijing has blocked international corporations from registering Chinese-character domain names.... including, of course, Verisign's NSI division. What will be the outcome of this one?"
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China Snubs Verisign In Domain Tussle

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  • 3dwm! I can see the ads now, "is your OS stuck in 2 dimensions?".
  • Thank you for a post that gets to the heart of the matter.

    But of course it's not just about business control (although the Chinese government is always looking for ways to make a profit). It's about political control, too.

    Regular censorware just lets you block certain domains for people who use your censorware. But if the Chinese government has control over chinese-language domain-name registration, then everyone in China and Taiwan (and Chinese-speakers in other countries) will be censored very effectively by the Chinese government. Do you really think they're going to let anyone register the Chinese equivalent of FreeTibet.cn? Once the system is in place, the Chinese government can block all access to the latin-character part of the name space, which it doesn't control. At least people in Taiwan will still be able to access latin-character domains.

    It seems to me that the right response is to let the Chinese run their own DNS (I don't think it's technically possible to stop them), while letting VeriSign run a Chinese-character DNS for the rest of the world, which doesn't want Chinese-government censorship.

    It has nothing to do with U.S. imperialism. It has to do with letting one country's censors get their hands on the whole world's internet.


  • It is not beyond plausibility that the Chinese govenrment could be considered to have copyright to the "simplified" character set which they invented in Mao's time.
  • by HarryZink ( 68053 ) on Saturday November 18, 2000 @06:45AM (#615980)
    China, fortunately, was the most likely candidate to do this, and I'm really glad they did.


    VeriSign/NSI *ONLY* hatched this plan of 'allowing' foreign characters, in order for hem to make more profit, and thus add 40,000 new characters to the .com, .net, and .org TLDs. Face it, NSI is a money-grubbing behemoth that cares woefully little about standards, or what the internet is all about - they have reached the inevitable end of their rope with domain registrations, what with added competition of hundreds of registrars, and having pissed off enough people (me included) for us to seek alternate registrars for those domains we had registered with them. What does that mean: less revenues for them, and like any company, they desperately need additional avenues of cashflow.

    Enter non-roman character sets.

    Instead of having just 26 characters (and numbers), there's 40,000+ available characters that can be tacked on to .com addresses - and since NSI is trying to have the monopoly on this (under the guise of an 'experiment'), they are looking to be the nly ones making $$$ off it.

    Regardless of their high-falootin' PR words of 'expanding horizons of technology' and such crap, this is just about more money for them - and absolutely NOTHING else.

    The only domains that might, if anything, need local character support, or those local TLDs of the specific countries.

    As such, it was just a matter of time until some country would have taken those steps, and now that China has, it is only a matter of time until Korea, and possibly even Japan will take similar steps (and there's more countries waiting in the wings) - the final result: Total fragmentation of the homogenous space that *used* to be the internet.

    Personally, I hope that this will be enough to terminate this 'experiment' (which is what it is being biled as), and therefore the world can return to a simple use of the roman character set as the defacto lingua franca for the internet.

    And I hope that sooner or later those fuckers from Network Solutions burn in whatever hell they believe in...

  • Neither VeriSign nor the Chinese seem to understand the way Internet standards work. They do not work to serve the money-making needs of a single company (VeriSign) and they are not subject to xenophobic sovereignty issues (China).

    VeriSign is way off-based supporting the registration of non-latin second-level domains under a latin TLD. It is definitely necessary that the Internet move to a Unicode-based DNS and registration system. But VeriSign is approaching the problem in the worst way possible.

    China, on the other hand, is playing its tired control game.

  • You'd have a better point here if this was a groundswell of resentment against VeriSign on the part of the Chinese people. Uh, the Chinese government isn't exactly representative of the Chinese people.

    Sure, China has been kicked around a lot by foreigners. Actually the Japanese were the worst, followed closely by the British, Germans, and Portugese, with the U.S. running a distant last. This move by the PRC government fits in nicely with their history of furthering their own goals by exploiting nationalism (a history which started before they were even a government, when the communist slogan was "resist Japan.")

    What does the average Chinese person think about the internet and computers? I guess we'll never know, because opinion polls aren't allowed. The biggest demographic group in China is peasants. If they think about computers at all, I'd guess it's along the lines of "Hmm...I wonder how much it would cost me for bus and train fares to get to the nearest town that has a computer with an internet connection."


  • If they are a Chinese company, with a Chinese name, then they won't be locked out.
    Oh, really? I guess I'll try to register the chinese-character equivalent of RememberTianAnMen.cn. Think I'll have any luck?


  • That's silly. You can't copyright individual characters under any copyright law I've heard of.


  • I would like to note that the article you are pointing to is from a BeOS-related parody site, called BeDope. Be *did not* sue Ebay in real life.
  • "Chinese domain names should be entirely in Chinese," Mao said

    Filtering foreign non Chinese caracter domains(mostly english content and some chinese content) is easy and probably goes unnoticed by most citizens, filtering all foreign Chinese caracter domains(and their Chinese caracter content) would probably not look good and be seen as censorship of the outside world.

    If the Chinese goverment controls all Chinese caracter Dns on the internet it will not seem like censoring, the unapproved sites simply won't exist. But they would need foreign goverment cooperation to do this, and some clever spin doctors to justify it.

    I don't think this is possible.(and I have no idea what sites are being let through at the moment?)

  • Hey, you're right -- and it probably accomplishes the other two goals, nominal ethnocentrism, some kind of information "control" AND they get to make some hard currency in the process. I forget how good the Chinese can be at making money.
  • From what I'm reading, a LOT or /.ers are making plenty of assumptions about the reasoning behind China's move. One question: Do any of you even know someone who's Chinese? Have any of you even bothered to study their history? All I keep hearing are stereotypes and misinformation being strewn about that reminds me of all the conspiracy fluff you'd find on the 'Net. For all we know, their reasoning might possibly to avoid the potention problems with cybersquating and international politics (don't think the chinese equivalent of www.georgebushsucksbigcock.cn would go well with G. W.).
  • Which registrar gets to register Chinese domain names, no matter how they're encoded, will depend on how they get hooked into the DNS. I mean, are both the NIS and Chinese national registries going to be recognized by the TLD servers? Will China mount its own TLD servers pointing to their native registry?
  • (Did they even teach world history there? Oh, I should know, cuz I graduated from an American liberal arts college.)

    Not as bad a a government trying to REWRITE history, I bet you've never even heard of the tianeman square massacre where your goverment killed hundreds of its own citizens.

    So just why did you come to the US to get an education, you "dumbfuck"?

  • Okay, from the posts I've read so far the basic assumptions that have been made (the article implies them, but doesn't come right out and say so) are that:

    a) China is not allowing people to register Chinese character domain names. This is not true. They are not allowing foreign companies to act as registrars. This put things in a whole new light.

    b) China has banned all use of Chinese characters in domain names. This is somewhat true, but I don't think that they're going to go about enforcing it with any litigation type deals. Think about it. Since (of course) the majority of Chinese character using individuals reside within their borders, all they have to do is make everyone use their DNS servers. And as far as international (or national) corporations go, they could just fine heavily whoever registers with Verisign instead of any of the nine other registrars. With that backing them, they should be able to easily get the majority of Chinese character domains registered with them. And once they have that info, nobody will want to bother with the smaller "alternative" registrar, Verisign. They will be to CNNIC what AlterNIC was to the rest of the Internet.

    With that in mind, I'd like to just say that I support China in this as long as they don't stop people outside of China from registering, they should be fine. Technical issues might bear looking into, since presumably these are all .com/.org/.net domains, but I think China would be able to enforce it without resorting to any international lawsuits or anything like that, even if they only did things on a (national) legal level versus an international one. It might be a little bit heavy handed, but I think it's livable, not really too much to ask. I'd rather see them in charge of it than NSI, anyhow.
  • yes, I admit that evevyone on internet have some rights ,but you shall use it in a correct way. What happens now is men are all crazying in registering ,so the chinese goverment shoul stand out for the responsability. Is that wrong???
  • by Big Jojo ( 50231 ) on Saturday November 18, 2000 @04:37PM (#615993)

    The Chinese did something really smart here: They said that there's going to be a Chinese Internet, that's not managed by a spinoff of the US government.

    Consider: both NSI (from policy/tech folk in the beltway core) and VeriSign (via RSA Inc -- think NSA) were founded by folk who left rather significant government bureaucracies knowing that they'd have a nice safe (and who knows, maybe lucrative) technical career ahead of them. But they never dropped all those government ties. ICANN was also shrouded in mystery at its birth, though one likes to think of that as bumbling rather than conspiracy. (Postel's death was unexpected, though...) For a long time, it's essentially been in the business of supporting NetSolutions.

    Point being: there's not enough of a clear distinction between the US government and the Internet government.

    And China is the first nation to have the balls (and opportunity, and technical need -- related to character set :-) to say "fuck off" to the US Internet regime. This is good for anyone who really believes in plurality. Such as preserving languages and cultures in the face of the Western onslaught.

    In the West, we don't have the moral right to redefine other cultures in the way that "money is the only value" capitalism is attempting everywhere on the globe. Sadly, the only way to prevent multinational corporations from doing whatever they want is to erect significant countervailing forces. The US government has not been very successful as a counterforce, though maybe it's prevented some abuses.

    Frankly, I hope a lot more countries start to develop strong lines between the US-biased institutions we have now, and institutions that reflect their own values and goals.

  • You are right, China is spying on the USA. I think we should be doing more to prevent it. I don't think the USA is above it. In fact, I think the USA should be doing more of it, particularly against China. I can put myself in someone elses shoes. If I were Chinese I would be applauding the Gov's efforts to end US bullying--though I most definitly wouldn't applaud their oppressive domestic policy. Just because they may have similar books in China doesn't make the point made in this one any less valid. The book may be propaganda, but it isn't untruthful; China is rapidly increasing their nuclear arsenal, and they are doing so mostly through information stolen from the USA. It's great that we spy on China. What is not great is the way the Clinton camp downplays the significance Chinese spying.
  • Have you ever tried pronouncing a domain name in Japanese? Since there are multiple ways to spell the same Japanese word in Roman characters (depending on the romanization system you use), you generally have to spell them out character by character. And Roman characters are hard to pronounce in Japanese; I've heard commercials where they take 5-10 seconds just to say the domain name of a website.

    Now, I don't know the exact reason support for CJK domain names was thought up, but I can tell you there's quite a bit of interest in Japan (at least) about it. So don't go putting it down just because you don't find it useful.

  • by Anonymous Coward
    A nitpick: China is .cn, Switzerland is .ch. Nothing against China/Chinese govt, but not sure what they are smoking. Actually, can someone maybe clarify (besides the control/ censorship/whatever hysteria) what the motives behind this are? Remember that Ministries, govts, orgs, are made of indivs, and as in corps, this may just be silliness on part of one man/woman.
  • What you have seen was an "access denied" message.
  • Easy! It's obviously a conspiracy by the English to prevent hard-working Scots companies with chinese characters in their name from having Chinese domain names.

    You can find out more about this conspiracy here [tripod.co.uk]
    Remove Me-Kilt

  • We should have seen this coming. Afterall, it is just a variation of control tactics used by the other evil empire.;)
  • Maybe it's my misunderstanding from my limited knowledge of character encoding, but I know plenty as far as kanji goes...

    There are literally tens of thousands of Kanji (you need to know 5000+ to read a newspaper), and these were taken from chinese ages ago. The characters are basically the same, but meanings can differ slightly between Chinese/Japanese.

    I'm confused by your use of 'character set'. If you mean methods to represent a character in a computer, kanji is not a charater set, and Japanese also has a few.

    And if you mean set of characters in a language, then chinese only has one, while Japanese has 3: hiragana and katakana(which only have ~50 characters)- and Kanji, which is shared with Chinese.

  • The W88 warhead data was leaked under the Bush admin.
  • once while working at as a technician for CrapUSA(compusa) I had an Asian customer bring a laptop in for repair. He was having problems connecting to the internet and we had a hell of a time fixing it because the whole operating system (windows 98) and even his keyboard were Chinese/Japanese Charactors(not sure which). So it is possible to type in these charactors.
  • It's possible... You need an IME (input method editor) that handles it. Win2k comes with one by default, and so do a few linux distros (mandrake is the only one that I know of). Oh, and the software needs to be compatible. ie: you need a version of netscape compiled to accept Chinese/Japanese characters. But IIRC mozilla and IE do it by default

    For more information, read Installing Japanese support in Linux [cmu.edu] or if you're using windows download the IME from windows update [microsoft.com].

  • known as kanji in Japanese, I wouldn't have a clue about the Chinese

    Hanzi in Mandarin Chinese, Hanja in Korean. All basically the same thing, though they have evolved apart quite a bit over the centuries.
  • you do realize that .ch is switzerland, and not china, right?
  • Now, Verisign should somehow block all domain name requests (from their root servers) to mainland china.

    That would change that shit real quick.

    Seriously, it is long past time that countries stopped playing softball with the oriental countries that want to play hardball (japan and china, primarily).

    They constantly dictate rules to us, set ridiculus trade embargoes, and generally push us around.

    I am not saying that isnt a good idea on their part (it is), I am simply saying that the universal response of 'respect their wishes' is how we for the tenth year running have ended up in a trade deficit to Japan, when we dont have one to almost ANY other technologically advanced country.

    Its nuts.

    All I am saying is, if China wants to play hardball with Verisign, Verisign should play hardball right back.

  • I neither know nor care, why Chinese government is doing this, but the whole idea of Unicode in DNS is stupid, counterproductive and serves no purpose other than more money for somain registrars and software manufacturers that will all issue "compulsory" upgrade versions of their software to support it.

    Oh, BTW, I am Russian, and the last thing I need is Russian in domain names, especially on computers that have no russian keyboard.

  • You are absolutely right. I've just done a web-search for some kanji, and it sure as hell isn't what I was displaying on our videophone.

    Having said that the names "hiragana" and "katakana" really don't ring any bells either.

    Hmm, Thanks for responding, I'm more enlightened now, but also more confused!

  • It would be cool if someone with the requisite language skills could make up a little web page showing gifs of chinese-character domains that China would never allow, along with their English-language equivalents. Examples:
    • freetibet.cn
    • multipartystate.cn
    • independence.tw
    • remembertiananmen.cn
    • overseaschinesehatecommunism.sg


  • Katakana looks the closest, but we were using a very modern-looking font, not as "brush-stroke-like" as the examples I've found.
    I'll assume it was Katakana henceforth.

  • Apparently Be Inc. [be.com], maker of BeOS and BeIA, sued eBay [bedope.com] for the ebay.com domain.
  • Here's something I was wondering...
    Chinese character (or whatever) URLs would actually be sent over the line in unicode or something, correct? Then would there possibly be a way for a user without the proper language character set support to type in (or link to) the raw unicode version?
  • Its definetely not impossible to ban. All ISP's in China are hooked up to something dubbed, "The Great Firewall of China." They may not be able to ban the domain nationally, but if they do not want people to see it in China, stopping unwanted domains is not difficult. They already ban sites like cnn.com and nytimes.com.

  • Why care? Well, when you can open your business up to 1.4 billion new people regurally, i'd say thats a good business strategy.

  • There are literally tens of thousands of Kanji (you need to know 5000+ to read a newspaper), and these were taken from chinese ages ago. The characters are basically the same, but meanings can differ slightly between Chinese/Japanese.

    More factless facts, but a historian friend of mine was explaining the basis for modern written languages to me and he told me that traditional Japanase borrowed Chinese ideograms but only used the ideogram for the verbalization or sound that went along with it. The actual meanings were not borrowed from the Chinese.

    Since they use the ideograms more as phoentic symbols than ideogrammatic symbols, the Japanese have been more successful at getting people to use and accept reduced-symbol versions of Japanese. It's probably also been more successful than Chinese attempts to do the same with pinyin due to the higher level of modernization in Japan.

  • If some country or organization does something really stupid and causes revenues and valuations to fall tens to hundreds of billion dollars, then they'll know. They'll mostly be committing suicide.

  • Chinese shares a lot of characters (Hanzi in mandarin) with a lot of countries. Not just Japan.

    Korea also uses the Chinese characters, and so does Vietnam (although not very much at all nowadays). Some other sino-indian countries use Chinese characters to a limited extent as well.

    Then of course you have other countries that not only use Chinese characters, but also have a very large percentage of Chinese people: Singapore, Taiwan (had to put it in somewhere..), Indonesia, and many more. Chinese people and the Chinese language are everywhere.

    Fear my low SlashID! (bidding starts at $500)
  • Is it really ethnocentrism or is it just Commie information control paranoia?

    I can appreciate that "the Chinese" (since the nation-state doesn't completely overlap with the Chinese ethnic diaspora) would rather not have to pay up to roundeyes to register Chinese domain names. There's probably a distinct fear, especially in the realm of high-tech that China will be to the U.S. what India was to the British in the 19th century -- a place to extract labor from. So a certain amount of ethnic pride dictates that they have some influence over these registrations.

    But their desire for total control also sounds a little bit like the "bad" China that wants to control information, limit freedom, and generally be a totalitarian Communist country like the bad old days.

    So which is it? Legitimate ethnic interest or nasty Commies?

  • It's not clear to me that there would be competition, so there might not be any way for the market to decide. Same thing with TLD proposals like .health -- it sounds more like someone would get a permanent monopoly.


  • Would a ban on the Umlaut cover the diaresis too?
  • Heck, An American company (by which I mean a company chartered in the US) effectively owns and controls every domain name written in every other language.

    Picking on China on this issue rather seems like a case of the pot calling the kettle black.
  • Brilliant.
    Moderate up!
  • It's amazing how different, and how free (speech&beer) the Chinese internet is with regard to intellectual property law.

    Check out sites like http://ilike.myrice.com.
    Such a website in the US would be shut down in 15 seconds.

    Anyone who knows both English and Chinese is free forever.
  • by ishrat ( 235467 ) on Saturday November 18, 2000 @03:34AM (#616025) Homepage
    Here is an extract from an article [cnet.com] "Fred Baker, chairman of the Internet Engineering Task Force, said representatives from China recently told him they were apprehensive about the test being conducted by Herndon, Virginia-based VeriSign. "They are concerned, offended might be the better word, that people who don't speak Chinese as their first language are trying to go off and make money on this," Baker said."

    This should have warned us.

  • Great. Feel free to register any of these domains. The U.S. has done plenty of bad things, but unlike China, it doesn't currently practice censorship. Nobody will try to stop you from registering any of these.


  • Since registration determines to some extent the accessibility of websites (think about blocking software which among others looks at the domain name of the site) it would be better if a Taiwanese company would be in charge of Chinese domain name distribution.

    The best of course would be if domain names would be restricted to the strict English character set. Although I am not from an Anglo Saxon country I am convinced English should be the Lingua Franca for Internet domains. (I usually use Latin for all the rest e.g. naming variables, computers in network).

  • Chinese characters are known by their dialect names in China but for us outsiders the word Hanzi will do. What the PROC can do is not allow any registration of TLD's with the .cn ending and tell its own DNS servers to ignore the VeriSign implementation. Japan would presumably have use its own TLD .jp and not be affected by the PROC's action. This action is sad however. I've worked on web pages for the Chinese-American community and having a Chinese domain name would have been nice for our overseas brothers (these pages have nothing to do with Taiwan btw)
  • They are complaining about the use of the Chinese characters. Imagine if Germany forbade the use of umlauts* in domain names. It sounds impossible to ban. It sounds as if the CCNIC are confused:
    "Chinese domain names should be entirely in Chinese," Mao said. "Adding a '.com' is just a temporary method."

    Hmm, I don't know why I quoted that bit, I don't understand what he's getting at. But maybe that's my point - htey don't understand what they're trying to do either.

    (*I know what an umlaut really is, linguists out there, but most people know the additional diacriticals as them as umlauts)
  • How can one Country block registration to domains written in a certain kind of script.
    I mean it's not like one Goverment have control over one script because you have the largest population in the world wich is native to that script.
    We are not talking about the TLD here are we? I mean it's not about ending your domain with 3 letters which stand for a country/organisation/etc.).
    If we are really talking about the use of chinese characters in Domain names, how can one country have control over that? Can someone give mor insight
  • By the article, it sounds like they're not banning the use of somedomain.ch -- but anything that uses chinese characters, regardless of the TLD?

    I'm as much for anything that limits the scope and reach of NSI as the next person, but this is a joke. What's next, is England going to forbid any other country from using english words?

  • Sorry if this is off-topic, but if a site uses an non iso-8859-xx character set for the domain name, how do these get entered into the 'url entry field'? Having a browser display the correct glyphs is one thing, but being able to create the correct characters from a 'Roman' keyboard is another. I know that it is possible to input Chinese/Japanese etc characters into emacs (though I have never tried) but this uses its own multi-byte character encoding which I do not think would be usable in Netscape, Mozilla or IE (on any Roman alphabet platform.)
  • by Seumas ( 6865 ) on Saturday November 18, 2000 @03:32AM (#616033)
    I plan to forbid use of piglatin in domain names. eBay (Be in piglatin), I would like 10% of your profits now. Thank you.
  • *cough*

    .cn is PROC, .ch is Switzerland...


    I just find it interesting that the PROC is trying to *preserve* intellectual property.


  • someone at cnet pointed to a site called i-dns.net" [i-dns.net]
    what they have listed under tech might actually be quite insightfull(even thought not technical) and may also prove the point that china can't actually block those other registration companies.
  • Here in Australia, we get the same shit from the US all the time. We are on the receiving end of the 'respect their wishes' game.

    Yes, we get a lot of rules contantly dictated to us, ridiculus trade embargoes set, and generally get pushed around.

    It's not nice to be on the receiving end, is is?

  • They have verisign.com don't they? They aren't BASED out of China, are they? I'll frown on China for a LOT of things, but denying non-Chinese companies chinese domains is not one of them :)

    A little integrity in domains is a good thing.

  • English should be the Lingua Franca for Internet domains? YOu truly believe that only English language words should make up domain names? English (Latin?) characters is one thing, but the English language is another. For example, what the heck is a verisign; I don't see that in the english dictionary? And if you know Chinese, you can easily use pinyin spellings instead of Traditional or Big 5 characters, which would be comprised of English characters, but would not match your proposition of being from the English language. Which English, by the way? Should it be color.com, or colour.com? Or in your casee, git.com.
  • Yep, sure is. I'm not sure if these new domains are going to use unicode or native encoding for each of the CJK languages (although unicode makes the most sense, it would screw up the ASCII for the rest of the URL).

    The easist way to do it would be to have a link on a web page. Sure, it would come up as $B$/$=(B, and you wouldn't know if you were going to the chinese eqivelent of goatse.cx (goatfu.cn?)... Or you could copy/paste as well... And if you were really desperate, you could theoretically type in the character codes manually. *ouch*

  • Actually, I'm more interested in the possibilities with the .CK TLD...
  • Good question. Since putting up chinese characters is, of course, technically feasible for any country's DNS servers etc., then I can't see how the Chinese government expect to do it. They would surely have to rely on the cooperation of every net-enabled country on the planet to outlaw it. And frankly, I can't see many countries wuld make anything but a token effort to prosecute anyone who tries. Still, 'communist' dictatorships have never been high on brains. (Please excuse any the bad grammar or misspelings)
  • I'm disapointed with the /. crowd - whenever something like this comes up, it seems to be a race as to who can come up with the most insulting put down for another culture. Look, I know that this is an odd move from an Internet perspective, but at least try to start from the point of view that world politics is likely to look different from Beijing than it does from Washington. Not everyone thinks the same way.

    Some people feel very strongly about cultural artifacts such as languages - some NZ Maori for example. It's not all that crazy to see how someone might leap to a defensive mode on an issue like this without really thinking through the practical ramifications all that well.
  • traditional Japanase borrowed Chinese ideograms but only used the ideogram for the verbalization or sound that went along with it. The actual meanings were not borrowed from the Chinese.

    Almost, but ... not quite. One of the things that makes Japanese so hard to learn - written Japanese, that is - is the fact that the "Kanji" can be read in several ways. At least one of the ways for many of the characters is the same, or VERY similar to Chinese. Add the ÐçÈ (Hiragana)@and fJf^fJfi(Katakana) sets, and you can understand why Japanese is a bitch to learn. :-(

  • I said IIRC - sorry - my bad memory :) But at least I wasn't making bad .ch jokes ;p
  • That's a Chinese company with a Chinese name? Would have sworn by it being an English phrase in English... Damn my brain must be broken again.
  • The only domains that might, if anything, need local character support, or those local TLDs of the specific countries.

    Except for all of .tw, international corporations wishing to reach out to Chinese-speaking customers, and Chinsese immigrants.

    Despite that, I pretty much agree with you. This was a bad idea from the start. Are CJK characters so much better than a Roman transliteration?

  • You'll get no argument from me saying that Kanji are a bitch to learn, but the Japanese writing style seems to make sense to me. Once you know the meanings of the kanji's, you can read a lot faster than it's possible to in english. I don't read each individual word any more, but more just skim over the Kanji's, which make it a lot quicker to take in. *and*, (when writing a least) if you don't know the Kanji, you can always use hiragana. Like to see you try that in Chinese.
  • Would have sworn by it being an English phrase in English... Damn my brain must be broken again.
    Maybe you should read the post. I said "Chinese-character equivalent of..."

    That's a Chinese company[...]?
    No. Are only companies going to be allowed in the .cn namespace from now on? No domains owned by individuals or nonprofit organizations?


  • You misspelled "misspellings," you are not excused.
  • If it uses UTF8 then aren't codes 0-127 the same as ASCII, so mixed ASCII and CJK (or cyrilic, greek, hebrew, arabic or whatver) should not cause a problem.
  • OK, I'll bite:

    Do any of you even know someone who's Chinese?
    My stepfather is Chinese.

    Have any of you even bothered to study their history?
    I've been interested in Chinese history for a long time. I audited a Chinese history course at Yale, and have read quite a few books on the subject, including some, such as Snow's Red Star Over China, that are sympathetic to the communists.

    All I keep hearing are stereotypes and misinformation being strewn about that reminds me of all the conspiracy fluff you'd find on the 'Net.
    OK, so what's your historical evidence that the communist regime in China has ever had any regard for free speech? The only evidence I know of that they even addressed the issue was "Let a hundred flowers bloom, let a hundred schools of thought contend." Since you're such an avid student of Chinese history yourself, I'm sure you know how that ended up. For the benefit of other slashdotters, it was a trap: people who used their freedom of speech were rounded up and executed or imprisoned.

    don't think the chinese equivalent of www.georgebushsucksbigcock.cn would go well with G. W.
    G.W. may be clueless, but are you suggesting he'd try to censor such a domain name? He's not that dumb.


  • They saw something that looked like it could make money. So they decided that rather than let some corporation do it, they would do it themselves. You can bet that they would charge at least as much as Verisign, and probably much more. That's what happens when you get a monopoly, be it private or public. At least with Verisign there is the potential that someone else could do the same thing some day.
  • Or "it has."
  • API, London. In an unusual atempt to reasert the power of the monarchy, Her Magisty today ruled that all English character domain names, trade marks, and works published in the English language are in fact Royal property.

    Her prepared statement read, "It's my language, and you only have a liscene to use it. As gaurdian of the language, I must see to it that it is not abused."

  • Please point out my historical errors.

    I'm glad you're such a big fan of the communist party. I assume you're planning on voting for them in the next election, rather than one of the other parties?

    Or do you live in Taiwan, which is now a multiparty democracy? If you live on the mainland, I'm surprised they let you access Slashdot.

    Next time you want to cuss at me, feel free to do it using your real name, rather than posting AC. Or are you posting AC because you're afraid of political persecution?


  • Really, AC? You might as well call Ukraine and Eastern Europe provinces of Russia. Do you also think the Communists deserve to enslave the rest of Asia as well as the hundreds of cultures they now oppress? Your post is both ignorant and inflamitory.

    The fat cats of Beiging will glow in the dark first. I'll be happy if the civilized world sells Taiwan all the nuclear devices they need to defend themselves until the Commies fall under their own corruption and stupidity.

  • My nation was "kicked around" by pigs like your ancestors
    Oh BTW, one of my "pig" ancestors was George Marshall, who was a pilot in World War II and fought against the Japanese in the Pacific. My other "pig" grandfather is Russell Crowell, who was an infantryman in World War II and fought against the Japanese. He was on Okinawa. You have these two "pigs," and other "pigs" like them, to thank for the fact that your country is no longer part of the Japanese empire.


  • ----Quote----
    Since (of course) the majority of Chinese character using individuals reside within their borders

    Ummm, well the majority may be living within the borders of China, but if you travel here to .au then I can assure you the number of manderin speaking individuals is rather large.

    While I dont have figures on me to give out numbers of people who do speak manderin or hindi or japanese or any other character driven language, these people make up a very large proportion of the .au landscape.

    With this semi-sun-dried-fact in mind also consider that .au has the highest or second highest penetration of internet users per-capita in the world.

    Now for the final bit of this soup (conclusion), there are a hell of a lot of people outside of the chinese borders who would use non-latin ASCII characters in their daily lives whilst using the internet.
  • I can't be sure about details, but the article doesn't talk about restricting registration of the .cn domain. It looks to me as if they're restricting any .com that has a chinese character in it... Doesn't china have control of the .cn domain anyway? From the article:

    the ".com" and ".net" extensions at the end of Chinese domain names ... VeriSign's system leaves the tags in Roman letters.

  • by krystal_blade ( 188089 ) on Saturday November 18, 2000 @03:49AM (#616060)
    Damn, and there I was, hoping to get dibs on these new way cool site names.

    www.sonofabit.ch (For frustrating things)

    www.scrat.ch (Everyone's got an itch)

    www.tou.ch (.org site for blind people)

    www.beowulfcluster.ch (added for more karma)

    www.thathurtou.ch (support site for blind people tou.ch-ing the lit stove.

    www.cou.ch (For the potato in you)

    www.icken.ch (Pig Latin site)

    Oh well... Sure hope ke comes up soon.


  • by willie150 ( 95414 ) on Saturday November 18, 2000 @03:56AM (#616061)
    Chinese shares a lot of characters, or pictographs (known as kanji in Japanese, I wouldn't have a clue about the Chinese) with Japanese. And as far as I know, the unicode codes are the same

    Apart from the obvious stupidity of banning a type of lettering, and even trying to enforce something like this, what do they think they can do? Just pretend that the Japanese don't have the same characters?

  • AFAIK from Japanese class, there's about 1000 kanji required to be literate in Japanese, but of course, there are more. Since Japanese have two other alphabets (hiragana and katakana) and Chinese doesn't seem to have any alternate representation other than pinyin, it seems that China is much more dependent on using these characters than Japan is. I think some of the pictographs are also used in Korean. But it seems stupid to use the same unicodes since this would make a translator like babelfish get messed up using characters from the wrong language, and could cause a fight between companies with the same names in kanji but different trademarks in english letters.
  • It might be possible if the China Gov't owns the all the 'top level Chinese' DNS servers. The core motivation is "CONTROL". By restricting the Domain Name registration process to local companies, the Chinese Government has the "CONTROL" to limit and direct business operations..where as Versign would be able to operate outside of this restriction (unless they are forced to sign some agreement).
    Prime examples where "CONTROL" would be used by the gov't would be the equivalent Chinese registration of "hotsex.com"....would the gov't allow this? Probably not..thus the need for control.

    What about 'Trademarks'??? Are they enforcable for China? Could Coco-Cola, Microsoft, etc stop others from registering their names?
    For example, in Chinese the pronuncation for CocaCola is 'hor-loc'. My main question is: let just say there is a 'hor-loc' steal manufactor comapany in China and they decide to register that name... In Chinese there might be many ways to write the SOUND 'hor' and 'loc'...how would the Chinese Gov't or any other authority going to sort this situation out???
  • Kanji is a reduced character set (woo less than a hundred IIRC) which can be used to represent Chinese and Japanese. There are at least two other character sets used to represent Chinese, which are considerably larger.
    Requiring less detail simply to be distinguishable, Kanji can be far prettier than the other two. I should know as I once had to port our videophone menus to it for a huge Japanese client!
  • So if we ignore their registrar and let people register chinese character domain names at Verisign, what will happen when no one on the outside can get to *their* fang.ch (whatever the chinese character spelling is) and instead gets some porn site; I smell a new kind of cybersquatting. And what happens when they later want to have these mainland china names recognized, but find that they are already taken by folks that registered through Verisign?
  • "They constantly dictate rules to us, set ridiculus trade embargoes, and generally push us around."

    That sounds exactly like what the US does to New Zealand. FYI: we have less tariffs and more Free Trade than the US. We take this stance largely on the basis of rhetoric our trading partners (esp. from the US), but it seems the US doesn't play by the same rules.

    Wake up and smell the coffee - the US uses it's clout to bully its trading partners too.
  • Go right ahead with your plans. Like someone already mentioned somedomain.ch is a swiss domain. And when can we expect to see these sites?
  • Not as much of a joke as you think - China, fortunately, was the most likely candidate to do this, and I'm really glad they did.

    VeriSign/NSI *ONLY* hatched this plan of 'allowing' foreign characters, in order for hem to make more profit, and thus add 40,000 new characters to the .com, .net, and .org TLDs.

    This was the ONLY reason for them doing this, and it has woefully little to do with their public posturing of 'expanding horizons of technology' and such crap.

    The only domains that should, if anything, need local character support, or those TLDs of the specific countries.

    As such, it was just a matter of time until some country would have taken those steps, and now that China has, it is only a matter of time until Korea, and possibly even Japan will take similar steps - the final result: Total fragmentation of the homogenous space that *used* to be the internet.

    Personally, I hope that this will be enough to terminate this 'experiment' (which is what it is being biled as), and therefore the world can return to a simple use of the roman character set as the defacto lingua franca for the internet.

    And I hope that sooner or later those fuckers from Network Solutions burn in whatever hell they believe in...

  • by Pru ( 201238 )
    I am marking this myself as FLAMEBATE

    But I have to say FUCK CHINA on this, the internet is international and just because its in a chinese charature dosent mean it should only be in China.Ok thats it bitches all domain names registered in english are now recalled and invalid!!
    Oh wait a minute to! No more cisco exports to you either, Thatill teach ya!
  • Hmm...this [iana.org] page says it's .cn, not .xh.


  • So Harry,

    Just curious who you work for. Do you wish them to go out of business so that you can't make a living? Or are you just generally against all capitalistic efforts?

    Look - shooting a company for trying to be successful in what they do to make money is nonsense.

    China is trying to claim national soverienty over a language representation? Uhm - bet Taiwan is pissed! For that matter, doesn't Japanese use the same pictographs for part of their language?
  • Why should you care? It's not as if you can read Chinese.
  • Simplied Chinese is not really a set of new characters, but more like a new font. And yes, Virginia, you *can* copyright a font.

  • Yes, but do they also block this CNN site [dorsai.org]?
  • Yeah. But you know English. What about those Russians who know no English? And I guess they aren't a minority. Why can't they participate in a Russian sub set of Internet?

    They can, and do. It doesn't take a knowledge of English to type in a domain name -- especially if the name is actually a Russian word in transliteration. I started working with computers when I had the same amount of English knowledge as most of Russians did in 1986 (almost none) and still I had no problems typing commands and program names in English, as long as I could read and edit text in Russian. I think, it was 1990 when I actually became able to read English text more or less easily, and at that time I already completed few large software projects.

    There are a lot of things where having material in Russian helps a lot, but domain names (just like program names) isn't one of them.

The wages of sin are high but you get your money's worth.