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‘Wikileaks “takedown” fiasco underscores pathetic state of internet “journalism” ’
December 8, 2010 12:05 PM   Subscribe

Every DNS dot net, a free DNS provider, deactivated Wikileaks’s DNS entry (news article) after the latter allegedly breached the former’s terms of use. EveryDNS.net is not Easy DNS dot com, an unrelated Toronto domain registrar. But, as EasyDNS founder Mark Jeftovic relates, try telling the Internet that.
posted by joeclark (101 comments total) 12 users marked this as a favorite

 
Whatever the virtues of Wikileaks, it's certainly found the Internets sweet spot in terms of freakouts and attention getting.
posted by Artw at 12:06 PM on December 8, 2010 [6 favorites]


active wikileaks thread still on front page
posted by chaff at 12:07 PM on December 8, 2010 [3 favorites]


THERE IS NEVER ENOUGH WIKILEAK
posted by TwelveTwo at 12:07 PM on December 8, 2010 [15 favorites]


It'd be a funny joke on everyone if he actually was a rapist and an attention seeking dick.
posted by Artw at 12:11 PM on December 8, 2010 [1 favorite]


active wikileaks thread still on front page

This isn't that.
posted by eyeballkid at 12:11 PM on December 8, 2010 [11 favorites]


As a longtime customer of EasyDNS (10+ years), I was appalled at this situation - EasyDNS has never had downtime in over a decade, and has protected me as a customer on multiple situations. Talk about attacking the wrong people.
posted by jscott at 12:12 PM on December 8, 2010 [10 favorites]


Today, we will play Limericks.

Your first line is: "I once took a leak in a wiki."
posted by Wolfdog at 12:12 PM on December 8, 2010 [3 favorites]


Wow that is an intense story. Yay internet!
posted by Uncle at 12:13 PM on December 8, 2010


Fond of the coinage "twitchunt." That's some lovely entendre compacted into a tidy little lexeme.
posted by kipmanley at 12:14 PM on December 8, 2010 [7 favorites]


Did anyone actually read the fucking linked article?
posted by eyeballkid at 12:15 PM on December 8, 2010 [5 favorites]


don't leak in a the mefi.
posted by mooselini at 12:15 PM on December 8, 2010


Heh, "twitchhunt"
posted by Eideteker at 12:16 PM on December 8, 2010


This story isn't about WL. It's about the general crapitude of blogs as a news source, and the untrustworthiness of many who publish them.
posted by anigbrowl at 12:16 PM on December 8, 2010 [6 favorites]


It'd be a funny joke on everyone if he actually was a rapist and an attention seeking dick.

Is it ok that I think that he would still function as a historically significant figure despite that being the case?
posted by TwelveTwo at 12:17 PM on December 8, 2010 [9 favorites]


"Don't email us again — you're clearly an idiot."
"If you and your moronic colleagues continue to email us, we'll be happy to write about your company's harassment tactics and explain to readers why they should avoid doing business with you at all costs."


Keep it classy, Gawker.
posted by specialagentwebb at 12:17 PM on December 8, 2010 [24 favorites]


Every DNS dot net, a free DNS provider, deactivated Wikileaks’s DNS entry
I elided that sentence into "Every DNS provider deactivated Wikileaks's DNS entry." Whew!
posted by lumensimus at 12:17 PM on December 8, 2010 [1 favorite]


Did anyone actually read the fucking linked article?

Nope. And how many of us have ever read anything published on wikileaks?

FUNNY ISN'T THAT?
posted by TwelveTwo at 12:18 PM on December 8, 2010 [1 favorite]


Did anyone actually read the fucking linked article?

The first two commenters obviously didn't. I think we're calling that a "twitchunt" now...?
posted by rollbiz at 12:18 PM on December 8, 2010 [1 favorite]


It'd be a funny joke on everyone if he actually was a rapist and an attention seeking dick.

Except, presumably, the rape victim.

Frankly, I'm perfectly willing to posit that he's both an attention seeking dick and aiding in a rather important service. Wouldn't be the first time ego and activism went hand in hand.
posted by AdamCSnider at 12:20 PM on December 8, 2010 [7 favorites]



The first two commenters obviously didn't. I think we're calling that a "twitchunt" now...?


You have an unnecessary "h" in there.
posted by eyeballkid at 12:20 PM on December 8, 2010 [6 favorites]


Wikileaks violated their terms of service by being attacked by other people?

Really? Talk about Blame The Victim.
posted by andreaazure at 12:20 PM on December 8, 2010 [1 favorite]


Exec summary: Confusing name confuses people, hilarity ensues.
posted by fixedgear at 12:21 PM on December 8, 2010 [1 favorite]


DNS companies really need to start being a bit more creative in their naming. (Says the guy whose company's DNS is on DNS Made Easy.)
posted by kmz at 12:24 PM on December 8, 2010 [1 favorite]


TwelveTwo: " Nope. And how many of us have ever read anything published on wikileaks?"

I did, once. It was SO BORING.
posted by Plutor at 12:25 PM on December 8, 2010 [4 favorites]


What's a chunt?
posted by MikeKD at 12:27 PM on December 8, 2010 [1 favorite]


Here's some broader context about the recent wave of WikiLeaks defensive attacks by anonymous groups

I'd missed Palin calling Assange a terrorist. That's rich.
posted by codacorolla at 12:28 PM on December 8, 2010 [1 favorite]


If I have this right, Mr Assange is accused of having a leaky wick.
posted by East Manitoba Regional Junior Kabaddi Champion '94 at 12:29 PM on December 8, 2010


I did, once. It was SO BORING.

i no rite? like all these facts n words whatevrrrr
posted by TwelveTwo at 12:29 PM on December 8, 2010


Also a long time customer of EasyDNS. This is a shame, they have outstanding service and fantastic customer support, even for small potatoes like myself.
posted by conifer at 12:29 PM on December 8, 2010 [1 favorite]


This story isn't about WL. It's about the general crapitude of blogs as a news source, and the untrustworthiness of many who publish them.

Well seeing how both the New York Times and the Guardian published articles fingering EasyDNS and the Associated Press apparently fabricated a quote, print media isn't looking so good here either.
posted by any portmanteau in a storm at 12:30 PM on December 8, 2010 [15 favorites]


This story isn't about WL. It's about the general crapitude of blogs as a news source, and the untrustworthiness of many who publish them.

Aided by the WikiLeaks credulity field...

Any old bollocks about WL will shoot around the Internet like wildfire at the moment, like this thing this morning. I'm pretty sure if you posted that Juliann Assange was under the influence of CIA mind control drugs when he was sleeping with that girl in Sweden and she was actually a Martian from a flying saucer then you'd be all over the web as a credible source by teatime, because WL mashes the Internets kneejerk stupid button hard.
posted by Artw at 12:30 PM on December 8, 2010 [2 favorites]


Ack, my eyes are rolling in sympathy reading this.

On the brighter side, now I know who to recommend if anyone needs a DNS hosting.
posted by ovvl at 12:36 PM on December 8, 2010


98280, a Wikileaks thread, discusses the story of Julian Assange in great detail. 98280 is not 98317, an unrelated thread discussing how a hosting provider was crippled by vigilante justice sparked by bad journalism.

But, as original poster joeclark relates, try telling Metafilter that.
posted by Rhaomi at 12:37 PM on December 8, 2010 [23 favorites]


It's like a chock. But for a woman.
posted by Kabanos at 12:37 PM on December 8, 2010 [2 favorites]


This story isn't about WL. It's about the general crapitude of blogs as a news source, and the untrustworthiness of many who publish them.

Yeah, newspapers and tv never fuck this shit up right? Puh-leeze.
posted by phearlez at 12:43 PM on December 8, 2010


stay classless, gawker.
posted by boo_radley at 12:43 PM on December 8, 2010


You do not get a tweet or correction. Now stop emailing and calling us, please.

Good god. I knew Gawker was bad, but I didn't realize they were that bad. That (and the other quotes from them) is just bizarrely unprofessional behavior.
posted by ook at 12:44 PM on December 8, 2010 [1 favorite]


Wolfdog: Today, we will play Limericks. Your first line is: "I once took a leak in a wiki."

I once took a leak on a wiki
(Thread-SHITTING's considered too icky);
But then the thread
Pissed back on me instead,
And now my wiki's all sticky.
posted by Greg_Ace at 12:46 PM on December 8, 2010 [10 favorites]


You'd think the NY Times and AP, at least, would do some fact checking.
posted by Pruitt-Igoe at 12:46 PM on December 8, 2010 [2 favorites]


The DNS system, the friggin lynchpin of the modern internet, is the internet's biggest flaw.

There are only a handfull of root name servers , and registrars are open to coercion. bring on P2P DNS!
posted by Ad hominem at 12:47 PM on December 8, 2010 [1 favorite]


Wow that was interesting. I hope this post doesn't get deleted. Frankly I find this kind of thing more interesting than the actual leak.
posted by yeoz at 12:49 PM on December 8, 2010 [3 favorites]


Gawker excel themselves once again I see.
posted by pharm at 12:51 PM on December 8, 2010


I think I have a new word for all the people who post on Twitter!
posted by symbioid at 12:52 PM on December 8, 2010


I once took a peek at a Wiki
To see if it was all Tricky Dicky.
And boy was I peeved!
I just couldn't believe
That I had been rolled à la Ricky.
posted by Kabanos at 12:53 PM on December 8, 2010 [3 favorites]


P2P DNS? It's coming...

The next step is something like youserv or flashback for p2p web-serving.
posted by symbioid at 12:54 PM on December 8, 2010


I once took a leak in a wiki
And now I am feeling quite sicky
At first it was fun
But now I must run
The condom won’t stay on my dicky
posted by InfidelZombie at 12:56 PM on December 8, 2010 [3 favorites]


Wow, Gawker is a real bunch of assholes.
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 12:59 PM on December 8, 2010


TL;DR: easyDNS denies wikileaks hosting after wikileaks founder and Strokes frontman Julian Casablancas is arrested in New York on drug possession charges; makes up crazy story about mistaken identity. Now off to twitter!
posted by Kwine at 1:03 PM on December 8, 2010 [1 favorite]


Please! Gawker is a bouquet of assholes.
posted by Eideteker at 1:05 PM on December 8, 2010 [9 favorites]


Aided by the WikiLeaks credulity field...

Nope, but you can keep digging that hole if you want.
posted by eyeballkid at 1:07 PM on December 8, 2010


There once was a wiki that leaked,
Putting nation states in pique.
They hooted and hollered,
And try to collar,
An Austrailian albino creep.
posted by codacorolla at 1:09 PM on December 8, 2010 [2 favorites]


Slant rhymes, imprecise meter, and a very fast and loose adherence to form... D+
posted by codacorolla at 1:10 PM on December 8, 2010


Do you think when Jesus died there was a Metafilter post?

Do you think people complained when there was another Jesus post, only 3 days later, describing HIS miraculous resurrection?
posted by 2bucksplus at 1:12 PM on December 8, 2010 [7 favorites]


Hope they don't screw it up. If the past is any guide people will exploit any weakness in the system to screw people over, steal and be general nuisances. They will have to be able to revoke "bad" nodes that try to poison neighbor nodes with bad data, establish "authoratative" records, and various other ways scammers will try to get a leg up.
posted by Ad hominem at 1:13 PM on December 8, 2010


I once took a leak in a wiki
and found that my wicket was sticky.
    But never to fear!
    Julian Assange was here!
He had it fixed up in a jiffy.*

*Yes, I know this doesn't actually rhyme.
posted by ocherdraco at 1:15 PM on December 8, 2010 [1 favorite]


P2P DNS? It's coming...

I don't really understand how they are solving the problem. From that page:
We currently believe the best way to create a stable environment for TLDs is to enact a central authority. We know this will cause much argument within the community, but we have made the decision that we believe will be best for the continued development of this project.
It probably is necessary to have a central authority, but I don't see how any such system could be significantly less vulnerable to political pressure than the one we have now.
posted by enn at 1:17 PM on December 8, 2010


There is nothing worse in the world than a pseudo-limerick with a fucked metre or incorrect syllable structure. Worse than Hitler, worse than the gulags.

Do or do not, there is no try.

Wikipedia article.
Limerick rules.
posted by Meatbomb at 1:17 PM on December 8, 2010 [9 favorites]


Anon has just taken down Visa.com.

I hope they weren't really meant to get AmEx or something.
posted by Infinite Jest at 1:19 PM on December 8, 2010


i just think its a shame that easydns cancelled wikileaks accout
posted by klangklangston at 1:20 PM on December 8, 2010 [5 favorites]


Interesting observation in the OP, and "twitchhunt" is pretty good, but if you're bothered by the "there's already a wikileaks discussion on the front page" contingent, I think it might be more constructive to use the "flag this post" button on the comments in question rather than to lament the state of MetaFilter commenting.
posted by jsnlxndrlv at 1:21 PM on December 8, 2010 [1 favorite]


What kind of wiki turns down a free blast of searing hot resin?
posted by Eideteker at 1:22 PM on December 8, 2010


I liked the EasyDNS founder's blog entry. You can just imagine the increasing wtfs in his mind as his day progresses. Good on him for putting his "money where his mouth is" too and making good on his promise.

Internet journalism or real - the issue is the same in their haste to get to the finish line first, reporters often leave out time consuming hassles like actually checking facts first.
posted by gomichild at 1:23 PM on December 8, 2010 [5 favorites]


Kabanos: "I once took a peek at a Wiki
To see if it was all Tricky Dicky.
"

It's tricky to rock a wiki
to rock a wiki that's right on crime!
It's tricky! Tricky! Tricky! Tricky! (what?)

I met this little Aussie
His outlook kinda saucy
Went to his site and got a fright, I had to leave real early
These govs are full of sleaze, with all their abductees
Or spend some time and forge a crime, they do it with such ease!

It's tricky to rock a wiki
to rock a wiki that's right on crime!
It's tricky! Tricky! Tricky! Tricky! (what?)
posted by boo_radley at 1:31 PM on December 8, 2010 [5 favorites]


There is nothing worse in the world than a pseudo-limerick with a fucked metre or incorrect syllable structure.

The limerick's structure, somewhat,
Necessitates eloquent smut.
If you don't have the time
To learn meter and rhyme
Then don't write them, you ignorant slut.

posted by Faint of Butt at 1:34 PM on December 8, 2010 [28 favorites]


Everydns.net's founder opened a Mefi account to answer an AskMe question a while back.

Assuming the situation is as described, which I have no reason to doubt, I really don't see how they could have made any other decision. I see about 3 options:

1. Do nothing, watch his servers grind to a halt from the DDOS, let everyone else for whom EveryDNS is the name server lose, too.
2. Magically have a fatter Internet pipe and more servers to handle the DDOS.
3. Dump wikileaks.
posted by Zed at 1:35 PM on December 8, 2010 [2 favorites]


It's about the general crapitude of blogs as a news source, and the untrustworthiness of many who publish them.

I'm pretty sure that I read that both the New York Times and the Financial Times got the story wrong. And the Financial Times fixed the error without issuing a correction.

And the Associated Press says "Mark Jeftovic says ..." when the reporter never spoke to Mark Jeftovic.

This is the story of our generation--how the truth is intentionally and incompetently skewed to produce "news."

Do or do not, there is no try.

I once took a leak in a wiki
With a lass who wasn't so picky
I whipped out my cock
She looked on with shock
Then said, "Not on my tits, it's too sticky"
posted by mrgrimm at 1:36 PM on December 8, 2010 [2 favorites]


whats up with matt being a fuckin vegan
posted by benzenedream at 1:38 PM on December 8, 2010 [1 favorite]


There is nothing worse in the world than a pseudo-limerick with a fucked metre or incorrect syllable structure. Worse than Hitler...

I wrote a poem about Hitler
And posted it to MetaFilter.
The meter was wrong,
So I made it a song
And now Meatbomb is off-kilter.
posted by Riki tiki at 1:40 PM on December 8, 2010 [1 favorite]


Dems cave yet again.
posted by Ad hominem at 1:50 PM on December 8, 2010


MetaFitler
posted by Pruitt-Igoe at 1:51 PM on December 8, 2010 [2 favorites]


I really hate Gawker. I used to read Jezebel every day but I won't click on any site associated with them anymore. They are a slimy organization and they don't care who they smear, ruin, or hurt because it all gets them page views.

Honestly, I feel like Gawker is similar to that awful eyeglass salesman who thought being cruel to customers was a sound business decision. Yeah now he's in jail, but he's not so far off because there are a lot of entities like Gawker (or Girls Gone Wild, another one). And there are real major corporations headed up by absolutely murderous individuals.
posted by Danila at 1:54 PM on December 8, 2010 [4 favorites]


So this is a matter of some people who are disgusted with the misguided and f'd up use of power and using their power in a misguided, f'd up way?

They make an interesting point.
posted by ambient2 at 1:57 PM on December 8, 2010


I liked the end of the easyDNS blog post:
There is a theory which states that a billion monkeys pounding on a billion keyboards will eventually produce the works of Shakespeare.

Thanks to the Internet, we now know this theory is wrong.
posted by memebake at 1:58 PM on December 8, 2010 [3 favorites]


[Look: folks who think a post should be deleted need to flag it and move on. Folks who think a post should not be deleted should discuss the content of the post and/or move on. Neither should be arguing in the thread about the likely or desirable fate of the thread. If that's something you really need to talk about, Metatalk is there for you.]
posted by cortex at 2:05 PM on December 8, 2010 [2 favorites]


BREAKING NEWS: Similar names confuse bloggers and no-fact-check "journalists"! More at 9.
posted by vidur at 2:25 PM on December 8, 2010 [1 favorite]


I just wanted to add to the chorus: as a long time easyDNS user I can only say that their support and service is exemplary. Simply put, easyDNS and Mark, rock. It's a shame they got caught up in all this.

Gawker pretty much left me speechless. For what it's worth, and I know it's not much, this one user won't be visiting Denton's little empire anymore.
posted by cedar at 2:33 PM on December 8, 2010


Hopefully Gawker gets taken down after PayPal.
posted by dobbs at 3:07 PM on December 8, 2010 [6 favorites]


BREAKING NEWS: Similar names confuse bloggers and no-fact-check "journalists"! More at 9.

See: #amazonfail.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 3:10 PM on December 8, 2010 [1 favorite]


On WikiLeaks and DNS: someone pointed out to me that if you google WikiLeaks, the first result (their site) is actually listed by IP. So even without DNS there's a reasonable way to find them.
posted by wildcrdj at 3:21 PM on December 8, 2010 [1 favorite]


Four Little Words: an alternative to DNS.

Discussed here

Implemented here:4lw.org
posted by Freen at 3:32 PM on December 8, 2010 [1 favorite]


So how long before some asshat bloggers start vilifying Jimmy Wales?
posted by mmrtnt at 3:39 PM on December 8, 2010 [1 favorite]


I once took a leak in a wiki
The Internet was in a tizzy
Secrets were shared
Which made the spooks scared
But they signaled their new intentions through subtly altered communications.
posted by ardgedee at 3:54 PM on December 8, 2010 [1 favorite]


So how long before some asshat bloggers start vilifying Jimmy Wales?

Eh, there's plenty to vilify him for. If for nothing else, the blight that is Wikia.
posted by kmz at 3:59 PM on December 8, 2010


I once took a leak in a wiki
when the situation got sticky
accused of a rape
or did the condom just break?
It's left me feeling quite icky
posted by jenkinsEar at 4:03 PM on December 8, 2010


Exec summary: Confusing name confuses people, hilarity ensues.

It's not really hilarious... More like terribly unfortunate for an innocent DNS provider. Luckily, the tide seems to have turned in recent tweets—a search for "easydns" now pulls up mostly people talking about how lax Gawker, The Huffington Post, Financial Times, the Associated Press, The New York Times, et al. have been in their fact-checking.

God. This is why QA matters online.
posted by limeonaire at 4:28 PM on December 8, 2010 [1 favorite]


The Globe & Mail has a decent story here, which as of this moment is featured on their front page.
posted by maudlin at 5:06 PM on December 8, 2010


Gawker Media Sucks is hardly a headline. They're the sorriest excuse for internet "journalism", in my personal opinion. I always thought they were the trashy, internet version of The National Enquirer, but I really lost any (hypothetical) respect for them after the whole stealing-pictures-from-Flickr-and-then-defending-their-shady-actions fiasco.
posted by 1000monkeys at 5:09 PM on December 8, 2010


From the Globe article:

Toronto-based EasyDNS, which helps route traffic on the Internet.

Companies such as EasyDNS and EveryDNS are the interpreters of Web surfing, translating alphabetic Web addresses such as www.google.com into the numeric codes that tell the Web browser where to go.

The second explanation is better than the first, but there has to be a better way to describe DNS to a layperson.

And of course there's nothing in the article about how the "blogger's typo" was repeated uncritically by so many media outlets.
posted by Pruitt-Igoe at 5:38 PM on December 8, 2010


Gawker Media Sucks is hardly a headline

How about Gawker and HuffPo and Financial Times and the Associated Press and the New York Times? Better?
posted by Plutor at 5:44 PM on December 8, 2010


First "twitchhunt" and now "lynchpin"? The neologisms keep coming!
posted by Joakim Ziegler at 7:57 PM on December 8, 2010


You do not get a tweet or correction.

Wow. Yeah, that's it, I've let myself keep going back to Denton's sites because I'm a sucker for gossipy shit but they can't even be bothered to acknowledge a major error that fucks with someone's livelihood in a serious way? That's beyond pathetic.

Bye, Nick.
posted by mediareport at 8:00 PM on December 8, 2010 [1 favorite]


I'm not usually one to defend the legacy media, but at least (some) of them posted an actual correction, and didn't just wordlessly replace their error so they could pretend they never made one. Gawker went out of a way to be a dick about it "you do get a tweet" because you know, that would take 10 seconds to do. What a fantastic bouquet of assholes. They act like it's a fucking chore to receive phone calls and emails from a guy when they're publishing lies about his goddamn LIVELIHOOD. Even the best media and journalists make mistakes, but to not WANT to correct them, is a goddamn disgusting shame.
posted by haveanicesummer at 8:21 PM on December 8, 2010 [2 favorites]


The Globe article calls the mistake a "typo", while I had always thought that a "typo" was the word for an incorrect keystroke, and that actually attributing something incorrectly is called a mistake, or a f*ck-up.
posted by ovvl at 8:38 PM on December 8, 2010 [4 favorites]


That "four little words" idea is really terrible. Besides it isn't IPv6 compatible. When we go IPv6 we can abandon DNS altogether. Everything will just gravitate to IP addresses we can remember, like "BEEF:FEED::CAFE".
posted by pashdown at 8:41 PM on December 8, 2010 [1 favorite]


For someone who constantly whines about big government, Sarah Palin sure seems to be giving her all in support of it.
posted by wierdo at 9:33 PM on December 8, 2010


With a leak via wiki enacted
Of 250k cables (compacted)
I run from the law
And a militant whore
If they catch me I'll end up [redacted]
posted by Neale at 9:37 PM on December 8, 2010 [4 favorites]


And that would be known as posting in the wrong thread. Wierdos should not have multiple MeFi tabs open at once.
posted by wierdo at 9:37 PM on December 8, 2010


The angel of crypto had spoken
and Wikileaks’ seventh seal opened.
“What Hipsters Are Wearing”
ran headlines next morning
"And P.S. you’re ruled by Harkonnens"
posted by kid ichorous at 9:46 PM on December 8, 2010


"If you and your moronic colleagues continue to email us, we'll be happy to write about your company's harassment tactics and explain to readers why they should avoid doing business with you at all costs."

Yeah... Except how would they "write about" the "harassment tactics" without actually explaining their fuckup?
Everydns.net's founder opened a Mefi account to answer an AskMe question a while back.
Wait, so OpenDNS is run by the same guys who booted wikileaks?
posted by delmoi at 10:17 PM on December 8, 2010


Wait, so OpenDNS is run by the same guys who booted wikileaks?

EveryDNS and OpenDNS were run by the same folks, but I see now that EveryDNS was sold to the dyndns.com folks at the beginning of the year. So OpenDNS and David Ulevitch had nothing to do with this.
posted by Zed at 10:41 PM on December 8, 2010


If you hadn't looked at the updates, EasyDNS now does provide name servers for wikileaks.ch and wikileaks.nl. And have received complaints from at least one of their customers for doing so.
posted by Zed at 1:41 PM on December 9, 2010


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