What are the safest domain names to register? Where should I choose a web host? What country is the best for serving a service that won’t ban me? How can I avoid website or domain seizure? — We’ll cover it here!
Governments and [physical] online policy groups have adopted procedures of seizing domain names as a way to shut down content they find objectionable.
If you or your web hosting company isn’t complying with the objection in a timely manner, they cut to the chase and pull your web domain down as an effort to silence you.
This has recently become a crucial suppression tactic utilised by the United States government (through the Secret Service, Immigrations and Custom Enforcement, DHS, and the Department of Justice, via the FBI and the DEA)
The effects of worldwide monopolisation and capitalism is seeing many startup companies that are attempting to become the next big Facebook, YouTube or something totally unique, fall to the disproportionate requirements of copyright holders and government agencies.
We’ve milked the story about how the US took WordswithMeaning! down far too many times – so we aren’t going to go into that – but we’re going to give you a rundown of the safest places to host your content and which domain registrars to use. Furthermore we will give you our criticisms of the companies worth avoiding (and boycotting) during your endeavour. Whether it’s user-generated content, torrents, file sharing or pornography – we’ve got the suggestions you may need.
COMPANIES TO STEER CLEAR OF:
Although we have yet to experience problems with our .org domains (due to the content not being too bad perhaps?) we have heard multiple cases of pornographic websites and whistleblowing/hacktivism sites being taken down by Afilias-administered domain TLD’s.
For the love of God/Allah/ Muhammad/Dawkins/Faith-figure of choice do NOT register with GoDaddy – not only do they flip-flop after years of supporting net censorship and anti-piracy regulations, but they have a terrible control panel interface and are a very over-rated company.
It’s also worth noting that GoDaddy bought out “NoDaddy”; a website that explicitly criticised GoDaddy’s work ethics, support for SOPA and general customer service issues. Every time you looked up “Go Daddy” on Google, you’d get hesitant reminders of why you should avoid them – and clearly they didn’t like that. To top off the bullshit; GoDaddy was taken down by Anonymous for 6 hours and yet the website admins stood by their far-fetched “99.999% uptime.” claims, which Wikipedia states flawlessly: “disputable as the nearly 6-hour downtime would suggest that GoDaddy had been in operation for approximately 70 years when the statement was released.”
If you’re planning on hosting something that will piss of many companies and break supposed laws, then it’d be best to avoid these:
Political Locations to Avoid:
Nations with military communal defence covenants (NATO, the UN etc.).
Countries known for any forms of corruption or obligation. (a country that may accept a bribe to shut websites down for instance)
Members of the ECHELON signal interception/monitoring pact (The United States of America, Australia, New Zealand, The United Kingdom and Canada).
WORDSWITHMEANING.ORG ‘SAFE’ DOMAIN RECOMMENDATIONS:
Switzerland is arguably one of the world’s neutralist countries.
Sites such as Wikileaks and Encyclopedia Dramatica use the .ch for backups and mirror lists.
Norwegians have the coolest domain ever! The simple response to the question “Can I trust the CIA with my tinfoil hat?” is .no – sadly however, if you’re not a Norwegian business owner then you may have to ask very nicely to gain access and register the .no domain.
When it comes to the Swedish political system, there is certainly a list of traits that put them on our side and a list that puts them up there with the UK and US when it comes to freedom and democracy. WordMean is currently hosted in Sweden and we’ve yet to have troubles with any political objections. In fact, when the US told us to cease hosting our website there, we inquired about servers in Sweden in which we managed a contract claiming that they would not allow investigations into the website, owners and physical data centres without strict warrants from the Swedish government – which doesn’t seem too likely with our line of content.
United Arab Emerates: .ae
If you’re interested in hosting or registering a domain within the Middle-East and surroundings then the UAE is by far the best bet. Not conferring to the Western pressures and sharing no interest in copyright laws, the .ae domain is usually a good selection for many. The UAE usually has a fair response to press freedom too.
Who you register your domain name with also matters – and if you’re going for SSL certificates then remember the previously advised VeriSign boycott –