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ICANN rottweiler savages Net consultant

Karl Auerbach barks and bites

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If you ever doubted that the legion of Internet consultants rushing around telling Net-ignorant business folk what the World Wide Web means to them have been talking out their respective arses, worry not longer.

Following the posting of an article by one such consultant on an influential newsgroup concerned with domain name issues, ICANN rottweiler Karl Auerbach felt compelled to reply.

Karl started off by saying: "Whoever is posting this stuff - please stop. The article that was posted under the above heading contained more errors than facts. It is amazing that the writer could get so much so wrong."

The article in question was written by Joe Burns PhD and posted on his own site, HTML Goodies. Titled "So, you want your own domain name, huh?", it purported to be in response to the question Joe gets asked all the time: How do I get my own domain? Apparently it was a combination of Joe's research and his own experiences.

And Joe's had a few - he is, after all, Assistant Professor of Communications at Louisiana University as well as an Internet consultant and seminar leader. Unless you hadn't noticed, he's also got a PhD. Why not visit his business site at www.JoeBurnsPhD.com?

Unfortunately, recognised authority on the Internet's structure and permanent headache to the ICANN board, Karl Auerbach, was not so impressed. He adopts the dissection style of quote and comment popular in email:

> So, what's a domain? A domain is a larger site on the Net
Wrong.

> You must first buy (register) the name and then set to putting that domain on the Web. That means getting your own static IP number.
Wrong.

> Actually, if you use an Internet Service Provider (ISP) you are assigned a random (drawn from the multiple IP numbers under the ISP's domain) IP each time you attach.
Largely wrong.

> This does not apply to AOL or Compuserve users, because you are not attached to the Internet as such, but are only allowed to surf through the use of AOL's browser.
Wrong.

> "://" are some leftover UNIX commands
Wrong

etc etc. But it gets worse...

> An ISP will most likely be a Class C IP. Of course, now you need to know what that means.
Clearly the writer does not.

> IP numbers are assigned in classes. As I said above, your ISP is most likely a Class C.
Classfull addresses went the way of the dinosaurs when CIDR came along years ago.

> Class D I'm a class D. I use all four octets.
Sheesh, that's not even in the same universe as the correct answer.
(The 224/8 through 239/8 space is for IP multicast.)

And so the dissection continues until, well, you're fairly convinced that Joe maybe isn't the authority he purports to be. If you wish, you can see his full article here. But we suspect you don't.

Just another demonstration of how wonderful the Internet can be. Experts available at the click of a button. ®

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