Tuesday, 10 September 2013

fuck.me.uk

Nominet Moots BAN on Swearing and Bad Language in UK Internet Domains

This shows such a lack of clue it is beyond belief.

"The government believes that preventing bad words in domains names could help to tackle abusive behaviour on the Internet"

I have to wonder what other nonsense the government also believes. What the hell happened to evidence based policy - where is this belief coming from.
  1. The idea of banning swear words is mad! The whole idea of what constitutes a swear word changes over time, and depends massively on context. Domain names lack context, so is bloody.co.uk swearing? It would be a nightmare to manage a list and handle disputes.
  2. Banning a word in a domain name registered at Nominet does nothing for all of the other top level domains. People in the UK often use web sites and email using .com domains or one of the hundreds of other top level and second level domains in the world. Our neighbour in the trading estate here persist in using a uk.net domain. If people cannot register in Nominet they will register elsewhere - so how does that, in any way, tackle abusive behaviour?
  3. Banning a word in a UK domain at Nominet does not stop the word being used in a UK domain (especially with second level .uk domains being considered). If I have nicename.co.uk I can have fuckity.fuck.fuck.nicename.co.uk as a web site or in email address and the ban will have no effect on that as only the nicename.co.uk part is managed by Nominet.
  4. You cannot tackle behavioural issues by such petty technical means anyway. If there are behavioural issues that need addressing, address the cause not the symptom.
  5. This is, once again, an attempt at censorship, which is bad for lots of reasons, and breaks basic human rights to freedom of expression.
We'll respond to the consultation, but Nominet is wasting its members money - my money - by even considering this - they should simply have replied with "No!", or possibly "Don't be an fucking arse!" [well, perhaps that is not P.C.]

Whatever next? banning spelling mistakes in domain names?

Anyway, I have renewed fuck.me.uk until 2022 just in case.

[apologies to owners of the example domains I used here]

Update: I am reminded of the case of a company registration, where Companies House do in fact ban swear words. They refused the name Buck & Follocks Ltd, yet they refused to say why! On the same day that they refused it, they did allow Bol Lox Ltd, for example? They made the mistake of suggesting that if there was a Mr Buck and a Mr Follocks maybe it would be OK. So Buck Ltd was created and Follocks Ltd was created. And they were the initial shareholders and directors of Buck & Follocks Ltd and this time it was accepted. Which proves how broken the system was as the judgement of it being inappropriate was not impartial or consistent.

10 comments:

  1. Ah well, there's nothing on http://www.scunthorpe.co.uk anyway.

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    Replies
    1. That was one of the cases I just cited in my response to the proposal.

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    2. Quite, and the domain works just as well when spelt www.sCuntHorpe.co.uk

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    3. Not forgetting things like #Susanalbumparty

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  2. Someone on irc sent me "e.g. rape-adrian-kennard.co.uk .. for example.. - I'm not saying you can jump to that conclusion, but I think you could make a case a bit like DRS allows you to challenge abusive registrations for IP rights". It is a good question...

    But I would not be able to challenge rape-adrian-kennard.ffff.co.uk or any other sub domains or (when .uk's open uk) rape.adrian.kennard.uk, or rape-adrian-kennard.com, so why is being able to challenge rape-adrian-kennard.co.uk any help?

    it is totally and utterly pointless.

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  3. Someone that I thought was quite sensible suggested I make proposals as to "how I would solve the problem". This really misses the point. There is no "problem" to solve. Why would there be? People can use swear words and rude words and words that someone, somewhere, does not like, in almost any medium of communications. Why single out third level domain names ending in .uk for special treatment as a "problem". It makes no sense. If people do not like the words used in any context, they can ignore them. It is simple and way better than "nanny state" censorship.

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  4. My domains angrybstd.com and co.uk will likely be hit if they are to do this - ludicrous and stupid beyond belief.

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  5. I own LoveTherapist.co.uk

    Or was it LoveTheRapist.co.uk ... I forgot

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  6. Just English swear words? If it includes German, any domains about the Conficker worm are toast; Mr Amer's design agency amerdesigns will be caught for the French word near the start - and then there are all the grey areas about which words count as "swear": does 'hell', 'damn' etc? What about my friend's drut.co.uk? fcuk.co.uk? Crazy.

    On the bright side, iwipemyarsewithnomi.net and its ilk should be safely out of their reach. No wear words, so even the .uk version should theoretically be acceptable to them...

    Like Ms Perry's bonkers agenda, it's a "solution" looking for a problem. Pointless, unworkable, and those are probably its better features!

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  7. Maybe I should email them with one of my domains... fuck-you.co.uk!

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