Feeds

Go Daddy boycott threat for backing hated anti-piracy law

Site owners transfer domains from pro-SOPA registrar

3 Big data security analytics techniques

Internet users have called for a boycott of web hosting giant Go Daddy over its public support of the Stop Online Piracy Act in the US.

While the company has publicly supported SOPA and similarly controversial proposed legislation for months, its position went largely unnoticed until a thread on Reddit gained legs yesterday.

User "selfprodigy" said he planned to move 51 domain names he has registered with Go Daddy to another registrar, adding: "I'm suggesting Dec 29th as move your domain away from GoDaddy day because of their support of SOPA. Who's with me?"

The posting attracted almost 4,000 comments, largely supportive of the boycott.

Ben Huh, CEO of the Cheezburger Network - the owner of sites such as FailBlog - said in a tweet that he would move his 1,000 domains away from Go Daddy unless it dropped its support for SOPA.

The campaign now also has a website at GoDaddyBoycott.org (registered via Canadian registrar Tucows using a privacy service to protect the owner's identity).

Go Daddy's position, however, has been firm. Not only has it supported SOPA from the outset, but it has also dismissed criticisms of the bill, which many say amounts to censorship.

"The notion that the solutions that have been put forth will break the internet, or that certain legal businesses will go off-line because of new mandates, is utterly unconvincing," Go Daddy general counsel Christine Jones wrote in November. "SOPA goes a long way toward fixing the existing problems."

A month later, responding to similar criticisms on her personal blog, Jones wrote: "Most of what we are seeing is either 1) rhetoric, 2) regurgitated lobbying spin, 3) criticism of language we have already fixed, or 4) retweets by people who like to steal music and buy fake, but cheap, goods."

However, most companies in the domain name industry that have expressed an opinion oppose SOPA, saying it will break end-to-end authentication using DNSSEC, the emerging domain security protocol. They also say that by forcing American ISPs to block piracy sites at the domain level, SOPA will compel American internet users to use workaround DNS services operated by criminals overseas, increasing the likelihood of phishing and fraud.

Go Daddy's Jones has refuted this, writing last month: "It’s hard to imagine that the limited times per year that the Attorney General seeks this remedy for a site dedicated to infringement will result in a mass exodus away from DNS as we know it. I have to believe that the average person doesn’t want to commit a crime."

Go Daddy has faced calls the boycotts before, notably this March when then-CEO came under fire for posting a video online showing him shooting an elephant while on vacation in Zimbabwe. In that case, the calls for a boycott resulted in thousands of domain names being transferred to rival registrars, but the net effect of the publicity was positive for Go Daddy's sales.

Nevertheless, opportunistic competitors quickly seized upon the latest scandal yesterday, taking to Twitter to promote special discounts for consumers wishing to transfer their domains away.

Today, a Go Daddy spokesperson said in a statement: "Go Daddy has received some emails that appear to stem from the boycott prompt, but we have not seen any impact to our business. We understand there are many differing opinions on the SOPA regulations."

Go Daddy says it registers, renews or transfers a domain name every second. It is responsible for well over a third of all .com domains registered today, not including its resellers' sales. ®

3 Big data security analytics techniques

More from The Register

next story
A black box for your SUITCASE: Now your lost luggage can phone home – quite literally
Breakfast in London, lunch in NYC, and your clothes in Peru
Broadband Secretary of SHEEP sensationally quits Cabinet
Maria Miller finally resigns over expenses row
AT&T threatens to pull out of FCC wireless auctions over purchase limits
Company wants ability to buy more spectrum space in auction
EE dismisses DATA-BURNING glitch with Orange Mail app
Bug quietly slurps PAYG credit - yet EE denies it exists
Like Google, Comcast might roll its own mobile voice network
Says anything's possible if regulators approve merger with Time Warner
Turnbull leaves Australia's broadband blackspots in the dark
New Statement of Expectations to NBN Co offers get-out clauses for blackspot builds
Facebook claims 100 MEEELLION active users in India
Who needs China when you've got the next billion in your sights?
Facebook splats in-app chat, whacks brats into crack yakety-yak app
Jibber-jabbering addicts turfed out just as Zuck warned
prev story

Whitepapers

Designing a defence for mobile apps
In this whitepaper learn the various considerations for defending mobile applications; from the mobile application architecture itself to the myriad testing technologies needed to properly assess mobile applications risk.
3 Big data security analytics techniques
Applying these Big Data security analytics techniques can help you make your business safer by detecting attacks early, before significant damage is done.
Five 3D headsets to be won!
We were so impressed by the Durovis Dive headset we’ve asked the company to give some away to Reg readers.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Securing web applications made simple and scalable
In this whitepaper learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.