back to article US shuts down Canadian gambling site with Verisign's help

The Department of Homeland Security has seized a domain name registered outside of the US, by individuals who are not American citizens, and who registered with a Canadian registrar. What is unique about this case is that the American authorities did not get the domain's registrar - a Canadian company - to pull the domain. …

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  1. Graham Marsden
    WTF?

    America...

    ... Fuck Yeah!!!

    1. g e

      Or perhaps more simply...

      Fuck America

      YEAH!

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Or perhaps more simply...

        America, ruler of the world!

    2. Richard 120
      Thumb Up

      Re: America...

      I'm guessing maybe that the downvotes and the subsequent reply didn't get the reference.

      It's Team America : World Police

      1. g e

        Re: Re: America...

        Oh I got the Team America reference alrighty...

  2. Chris 244
    Black Helicopters

    Oh not, how do I find Bodog now?

    Quick Google.com search yields:

    bodog.net

    bodog.ca

    bodogbrand.com

    bodognation.com

    bodognetwork.com

    bodog.co.uk

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Oh not, how do I find Bodog now?

      A very good point well made.

      What proportion of internet users actually memorize and type URLs anymore, as opposed to simply keying keywords into the search box? Mobile browsers don't even bother with a box for the URL any more as typing suffix and punctuation marks on a touch screen is too much hassle.

      My point being that the relevance of DNS system is being eroded in favour of search engine results. I wonder if it might actually be possible today to run a commercial website on just a static IPv4 address.

  3. JamesFirth
    Megaphone

    Worrying but not exactly new issue. In fact US claim .com to be sovereign US territory too. Seriously. I even predicted the gambling take-downs:

    http://www.slightlyrightofcentre.com/2011/07/sovereignty-creep.html

    For more on the jurisdiction claim:

    http://www.slightlyrightofcentre.com/2011/07/sovereignty-creep.html

    James Firth

  4. Paul Hovnanian Silver badge
    Angel

    Never give up El Reg's .co.uk domain.

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    USoA busily shooting its own foot

    More reason why any one government including, disappointingly, the USoA, simply cannot be trusted with global resources like the DNS root. Though the .com TLD isn't itself the root, there's also a case to be made that gTLDs shouldn't be run by companies under any one government.

    *dons tin-foil napoleon hat*

    If this was Iran or something, the US would shrug and ignore them. But now that it's maryland, or earlier kentucky, oh dear, world-wide prosecution. Same with the treatment of that equally unlikeable character Kimble, and now his wife too, down in New Zealand.

    If you add this, and the various wars, and various international treaties (eg ACTA, but the ICC tantrum counts too), and its TLA soup of DHS and 1270 other agencies and then a sack more private companies doing more of the same, and add it all up, I'd say they're going rogue to the point that the Chinese government is starting to look reasonable or at least consistent.

    Coat? The tin-foil lined one, but I already gots me hat.

  6. ElReg!comments!Pierre Silver badge

    .com is supposed to be US

    To be honest I find this very unsurprising. .com domains are supposed to be US domains (for no good reason other than the US deciding so, and the registration authorities being US-bound; but that's another discussion). .com domains fall under the juridiction of US courts, then.

    1. Colin Miller

      Re: .com is supposed to be US

      Err. .us is for the US.

      .org .com .net .mil .edu .gov were all originally intended to be generic top-level domains, available for world-wide use. IMHO, this was a mistake as .co.int / .org.int etc should have been the TLD for multinational companies/organisations. The last 3 became defacto US domains, and it seems all 6 are now dejure US domains.

    2. Cazzo Enorme

      Re: .com is supposed to be US

      The intention of .com domains are that they COMmercial domains for entities with an international presence. That's why a large US company clothing company called Prince lost when they tried browbeat a small UK mushroom company with the same name to get their domain name. The ruling went against the US company since they only target US markets, whereas the UK company sell their 'shrooms all over Europe. As someone else pointed out, .us is TLD for US domains.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Re: .com is supposed to be US

        This has gone both ways though.

        Chase manufacturing in the UK lost chase.com years back, even though they had registered it many years ahead of Chase bank.

    3. ElReg!comments!Pierre Silver badge

      Re: .com is supposed to be US

      I like that post of mine being uniformely downvoted. Sincerely.

      Even though I still think it is in effect the reason for the shutdown, and my post was wrongly understood as defendinding the US landgrab on .com instead of just describing it (my fault, probably). It is good to know that people don't like said landgrab.

  7. P. Lee Silver badge
    Mushroom

    There should be clear advice in the terms and conditions

    Anyone "purchasing" a US-controlled domain outside of the US should have it highlighted at the top of the agreement that you become liable to US law and extradition on failure to comply with US legal restrictions.

    If you aren't advised of this, I would suggest that your local registrar is guilty of gross negligence.

    Sue 'em!

    The Balkenisation of the internet continues - and that is just what the politicians want.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: There should be clear advice in the terms and conditions

      How can an agreement with a third party outside the US place me under the jurisdiction of US law? Sounds like nonsense to me.

      Time to declare independence from the USA

      1. Bjorg

        Re: Re: There should be clear advice in the terms and conditions

        The only way I can see this being remotely reasonable is the advertisements and possibly where the servers are located. I didn't see mention in the article, but if the servers are on US soil, then just like with megaupload, you're doing business on US soil and they can shut you down. As far as extradition, a lot of people don't understand it and I don't blame them. It's necessary because if I murder/rob/rape/pillage in the US and then flee to a US ally like Canada, I should get a clean slate? Hell no. However, it's taken too far in this case. If the advertisements are specifically targeted to US citizens, I could see some sort of legal dispute, but I'm not sure what (i.e. the laws of other cultures should be respected, even if that other culture is the US). Shutting down the site and attempting to extradite the owners sounds like total nonsense to me, but then again you can't have the upside of globalization without the downside.

  8. Nuno trancoso
    FAIL

    Just... really... i mean... seriously...

    @AC-03:05

    Uncle Sam's boys are consistent. They ALWAYS end up looking like brain dead muppets.

    Mildly amusing as cowboys, pretty much useless for anything else.

  9. David 45

    Cowboys? Sure am, pardner.

    Cue for a song......"If I ruled the world.....................tum tee ta"

  10. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    No surprises

    Got no sympathy for the gambling site - I'd be quite happy to see them all closed down. However that should have been the job of the Canadians, if the site was registered there, and only if it was illegal under Canadian law.

    The last two paras in itallics sum up the situation quite neatly, and I do think the US will see the rest of the world slowly realising how much of a liability they are becoming and pulling away from relying on them as much as possible.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: No surprises

      Liability? You bet.

      Judging by the way the GOP nominations are going and the quality of the candidates running for election, the USofA is in big trouble. If any of those republicans get elected then it is time for the rest of the rational world to close our doors and sever diplomatic relations with them. They deserve nothing less.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Re: No surprises

        Didn't we all say the same thing when Bush got elected? I'll believe it when I see it.

  11. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Any with more info on this?

    I have a UK hosted website arrived at via a .com URL. Am I subject to US "law" now? What about the .org and .net TLDs? Is there any TLD not subject to this kind of cowboy behaviour? My site is purely personal/hobby (remember those?) but at the same time I think this is outrageous bullshit and I'd like to vote with my feet and money. Thanks.

    1. g e

      Re: Any with more info on this?

      Yep, I should think all those TLD's are now subject to the whims of crazy puritanical God-Botherers and other influencers like Pharma, Media and anyone else with the money to buy legislation.

      Always register a .co.uk local style domain as well

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Re: Any with more info on this?

        100% agree with you, I always register .co.uk's first, and actually only care about .com IF I am to deal with the US of A (and in that case I comply with their laws pretty much anyway)..

        1. Paul_Murphy

          Re: Re: Re: Any with more info on this?

          >I comply with their laws pretty much anyway

          How can you tell? - they keep on changing them/ making new laws and making normal/ reasonable activities illegal.

          ttfn

    2. Stuart 22

      Re: Any with more info on this?

      If you trade with US citizens in the USA then the answer is definitely YES whether you have a .COM or a .CO.UK domain. It just happens that the US has more leverage on a .COM then on a .CO.UK.

      Why do you see a problem with judicial systems taking action over alleged illegal activity within their jurisdictions? Wouldn't it be nice if we could get at the Nigerian scammers? Would you object to, say, a british court requiring yahoo.co.uk to terminate the offending email account (not that it would do much good!).

      Going back to .CO.UK, as I understand it, Nominet's glue records are handled courtesy of organisations within US jurisdiction so they could probably get them unstuck too. However, it would be bad politics so, this side of a Republican nutter in the White House, they are very unlikely to tread on other countries TLDs.

      1. PyLETS
        Boffin

        don't mess with the root or we will rebase it

        "Nominet's glue records are handled courtesy of organisations within US jurisdiction so "

        It wouldn't just be bad politics for US courts to attempt this kind of insanity, it would result in all non US TLD and root server operators choosing to use a new root zone provider forthwith, e.g. one coming under international law such as the ITU. That's if the latter can ever streamline their bureacracy and procedures enough to be credible within this space, but hey, this kind of idiocy is giving them an incentive to do so. It's not as if ICANN, a private company based in California are credible as a diplomatic entity in connection with relationships between sovereign nation states. ICANN don't own this space, they hold an increasingly questionable tenure on it.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Re: Any with more info on this?

        The problem is, the people breaking the law are the US citizens, not the Canadian gambling site - why is the US not going after the people who are illegally gambling?

        1. chr0m4t1c

          Re: Re: Re: Any with more info on this?

          Because the people using the sites are proud upstanding American patriots, whereas the people running the sites are dodgy foreigners who might even have beards.

          In an unrelated note: Does anyone know if any casinos in Vegas have been closed because people from Maryland went there to gamble?

    3. Ian Michael Gumby Silver badge
      Boffin

      Re: Any with more info on this?

      @AC.

      Verisign controls the .com TLD and thus they are subject to US laws.

      You have a website that you get to using a .com but the website and its servers are outside of the US.

      That's fine. I believe that .net is also controlled by Verisign.

      You want to get around this?

      Sure. simple.

      Register your domain w a .co.uk then redirect your .com domain there.

      If you decide you want to break US laws, you lose the .com domain, but you still have your website intact up and running. Just make sure your visitors know to bookmark the .co.uk url too.

      With respect to Bodogs. They knew they were breaking US Laws. The sad thing is that there are ways of getting around this that are legal on the part of Bodogs.

      1) Don't deal with US banks. Bodogs is Canadian. They could deal with TD Bank among other Canadian banks. They can deal with banks in other countries too.

      This puts the burden on the US gambler to getting a bank account with a bank outside of the US.

      2) When a customer registers with Bodogs, Bodogs puts up in clear print that they don't want to break US laws and if the person is a US citizen they shouldn't register.

      3) Use geo location on IP blocks to limit direct connectivity to the US. If the person gambling in the US wants to use Bodogs, they can go through an off shore redirect site. Again the onus is on the US person for breaking US laws.

      There's more to it. The point is that Bodogs could have done things to limit their legal exposure.

      That still wouldn't stop the US Government from taking the domain, however... it would have given Bodogs legal recourse to sue the US Government.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Re: Any with more info on this?

        Point is though... WHY should Bodogs HAVE to do this? They are not in the US, they are Canadian.

        Should every web page have to know the laws of EVERY country in the world and filter accordingly?

        If I have a web page with pictures of my wife in a bikini should I have to block access to it to Muslim countries? No.

        Bottom line here is that this is the government behaving like all major corporations and exacting their will because they can.

        1. Oninoshiko

          Re: Re: Re: Any with more info on this?

          "If I have a web page with pictures of my wife in a bikini should I have to block access to it to Muslim countries? No."

          Maybe not, but to you think you'd get away with advertiseing it in a Muslim country?

          Bodog.net did a hell of a lot of (television) advertiseing and sponsorships in the US. This isn't a case of "oh some USAians happened to go to this site" they actually ran ads in the US, targeted at USAians.

          (Full disclosure: Frankly, provided they are running a fair game, I think it should be legal. That doesn't change the fact that your analogy is flawed)

        2. Ian Michael Gumby Silver badge
          Boffin

          Re: Re: Re: Any with more info on this?

          @AC

          When you do business internationally, you need to know the laws of the countries involved. Here in the US, you could probably find web sites selling WW II Nazi paraphernalia. What do you think will happen if they tried to sell stuff to someone in Germany.

          The truth is that when you deal with people in other countries, you need to know the law, regardless of the web.

          The truth is that the US Government is upholding US laws. Bottom line.

          Pretend that we're using my example above and the country in question is Germany. And the web site is in the US. If that company knowingly sold Nazi paraphernalia to a German citizen in Germany, how would you react if the German government took down the website and extradited the website owner to face charges in Germany?

          Would you protest the German government? Or would you make fun of the owner of the American web site?

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Any with more info on this?

        Many thanks (I am the original poster). I think a .co.uk etc domain is 'weaker' because it strongly hints at a country specific site, whereas I would much prefer something more generic (.com was perfect). .org is intended for charity organisations etc, .net is also probably subject to bullying similar to .com. I was curious if the usually well informed Reg commentards and commentardettes had any suggestions for a 2nd best alternative to a .com TLD? Thanks.

  12. Nigel Brown
    Coat

    What was that aboot the land of the free?

    Oooh the irony.

  13. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    global law

    "and federal law prohibits bookmakers from flouting that law simply because they are located outside the country"

    Which sounds a lot like ; - Our laws apply to the whole world.

    1. That Awful Puppy

      Re: global law

      See also: stoplikingwhatidontlike.jpg

    2. James Micallef Silver badge
      Headmaster

      Re: global law

      It is certainly not the case here that the US is projecting it's law globally. It's acting within it's borders and asking Canada to extradite someone who has been breaking US law. Not being an apologist for the US here, it's pretty much well known that the US are nutters about online gambling and consider it illegal, so anyone operating a betting site that does not block US users, or at least put up a few disclaimers, is asking for trouble. Advertising those services is asking for even more trouble.

      Look at it this way - if I have a dutch website selling <some unspecified substance> that is legal in the Netherlands but illegal in the UK, and I not only have no disclaimers about my product being illegal in the UK, but I'm knowingly delivering to the UK and actively marketing this product in the UK. You think the UK authorities wouldn't try to extradite me? And if I was so foolish as to register a .co.uk website, wouldn't the UK authorities be able to shut it down legally?

      The only worrying issue I see here is that the US are treating .com as belonging to them even though the US have their own .us domain and .com, .org etc are meant to be supra-national registrations. But then again, .com being used as a US domain has been the de facto standard since the beginning of the internet. How many .co.us domains have you ever visited??

      1. SYNTAX__ERROR
        Headmaster

        @ James

        It's = IT IS or IT HAS

        1. James Micallef Silver badge
          Holmes

          @Syntax error

          No shit, Sherlock! You think I have nothing else to do all day than to grammar-check my el Reg postings??

      2. Joe Blogs

        Re: Re: global law

        However, to use your analogy, if your Dutch website was selling something illegal in the UK but not in Holland, and people from the UK went to holand to use this product then they would not be doing anything illegal.

        So the question is - if I am gambling from the US but on a Canadian server, where is the "gaming" happening? in the browser of the user or the server of the Gaming Company?

        1. James Micallef Silver badge
          Holmes

          Re: Re: Re: global law

          Good point. I suppose that I could make a case that if the server is in Canada, then that's where the gambling activity is taking place, although all of that is virtual and any 'physical' activity made in placing a bet is a combination of browser + hardware in the US, server in Canada and infrastructure that could be any place between.

          I think the strength of the US case rests on 2 things:

          (1) advertising happening in the US, therefore the betting company is operating in the US (although it's not specified whether the advertising was online, it's quite likely that even though the gaming server is in Canada it could be serving ads from an ad server in the US)

          (2) payouts made on winning bets are made in the US, so the gambling activity is taking place in the US. Maybe US gamblers with a bit more savvy could use a foreign bank account to place bets and collect payouts, that way it would be closer to the analogy of the Brit going over to Holland to purchase their weed

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Stop

            Re: Re: Re: Re: global law

            Well,

            > (1) advertising happening in the US,

            Is the advertising actually illegal or just the service that is being advertised? If not, there is no case to answer anyway on those grounds.

            > (2) payouts made on winning bets are made in the US....

            It depends on who the payment intermediary is and where they are I guess. Again, though, is it online gambling that is illegal in Maryland or the receipt of winnings that is illegal or both? If receipt of winnings is itself illegal, does that mean that Maryland residents can not gamble while they are outside of Maryland and bring their winnings home? That seems highly unlikely.

          2. Ian Michael Gumby Silver badge
            Boffin

            Re: Re: Re: Re: global law

            @James.

            US Interstate Gaming laws. Its legal to place a bet in a Casino in Vegas. But if you're not in Vegas and place a bet over the phone to someone in Vegas... you're still breaking the law.

            Same would apply to the internet.

      3. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Re: global law

        So...

        EVERY web page in the world must know about ALL the other laws in all countries and filter/warn accordingly?

        Your Dutch example is not applicable since the SELLING in the Netherlands is not illegal. Buying, selling and importing to the UK is illegal IN THE UK. If you are not IN the UK then you can't be guilty of committing a crime IN the UK.

  14. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Nothing Is Ever What It claims to be

    While the yanks are free to carry guns and shoot each other, frequently, in many other respects they share a level of freedom with those in North Korea and Iran. Perhaps not in every way but in many places and in many locations. Just try going to an international conference and not toeing the party line. Siberia might fell quite warm and cosy compared to your home coming.

    The yanks have a colonialist streak about as wide as the equator.

    What I can never understand is why so many places just roll over and say 'yes sir' rather than the more correct 'sod off and play with yourself'.

    Why has the UK outsourced what was once called justice to the land of the slaves?

    1. g e
      Flame

      Outsourced

      Probably because they still own us after we hired them as cannon fodder in the second world war with a load of our gold and all of our US-based international interests...

      Oh, and because our government has been spineless and suckup for decades now.

      It's the 'Special Relationship' that the UK 'enjoys' with the USA

      1. Matthew Collier
        Stop

        Re: Outsourced

        "Probably because they still own us after we hired them as cannon fodder in the second world war with a load of our gold and all of our US-based international interests...

        Oh, and because our government has been spineless and suckup for decades now.

        It's the 'Special Relationship' that the UK 'enjoys' with the USA"

        How exactly do they own us? If you mean the loan we have been paying off, it's now paid off:

        http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/magazine/4757181.stm

        Also, wasn't the "Special Relationship" recently re-defined (and downgraded) to "Important Relationship"!?

        If it were down to me, there would be not much of a relatoinship at all, and I would mirror all US travel and Visa entry requirements they setup for us, just to be fair, you understand! ;)

        See how they like having to pay for a "pre-authorisation", having to register that on a website (and by no other means), being denyed entry 'cos they said something about us we didn't like, and us taking their picture and their fingerprints when they get here... :D

        As far as I can see, the yanks are taking the piss, trying to enforce local law on a foreign company, and the sooner ICANN looses it's grip, and the US looses control of the root domain, the better!

    2. SYNTAX__ERROR
      Boffin

      "as wide as the equator"

      The equator is a notional line. One can be on one side of it or on the other. It has zero width.

      </pedantry>

      1. CD001

        Re: "as wide as the equator"

        "As wide as the distance between the tropics" might have been better maybe ... longer, yes, but more in keeping with the notion being presented.

  15. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Our law says so, dont care you dont operate here....

    Ok, So

    "Sports betting is illegal in Maryland, and federal law prohibits bookmakers from flouting that law simply because they are located outside the country," said US attorney Rod Rosenstein in a statement.

    Maryland = illegal to bet on sports

    Company not in Maryland

    Maryland citizen in Maryland

    Company operates betting site, not in Maryland, not illegal

    Maryland citizen make a bet in Maryland to Company not in Maryland, Citizen broke the law.

    "The company is also accused of spending $42m to promote the site in various US states, including Maryland. The move came after an undercover investigation by the FBI, and with the help of a whistleblower who used to work at Bodog."

    So, they needed an undercover investigation to know if they were advertising within the US, using US advertisers.

    Maryland / US = illegal to advertise betting

    Company not in Maryland / US

    Advertising agency in Maryland / US

    Company requests avertising of its product.

    US agency receives money to advertise its product in the US, illegal.

    The Agency took the money for advertising in the US a product that was illegal, so shouldnt it be the US agency that is at fault here?

    Why should a company that is operating in another country have to enforce other countries laws, isnt it down to the citizens of the country to ensure that they are law obiding in their own country?

    If its not, then that means I can be arrested for doing something in my country which is legal, but isnt in another, because it so happens that what I was doing turned out to be using a server in a country that it was illegal to do it.

    1. Danny 14 Silver badge

      Re: Our law says so, dont care you dont operate here....

      seizing assets is a big business. There is a recession you know.

  16. Muckminded

    Quit using logic

    this is law.

    1. My Alter Ego
      Paris Hilton

      Re: Quit using logic

      I can't find it, otherwise I'd post a link, but I remember Jeremy Clarkson attempting to park outside an closed airport in the US (possibly Florida). When he was stopped by a trooper and responded that it made no sense that he wasn't allowed to park - it was closed, the trooper announced on camera "You don't need logic when you have laws".

      I'm now scouring the web to find the video.

      1. Dotter

        Re: Re: Quit using logic

        You don't need logic when you're Jeremy Clarkson either.

  17. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    US has ultimate jurisdiction over TLDs managed by US company (Verisign)

    Now there's a shocker. /s

  18. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Bring back X.121 addressing

    It's our damn fault we picked an American technology like the Internet instead of the United Nations ITU standard X.25.

    Now what what was the full 14 digit X.121 address for El Reg again, I've lost my phonebook.

    1. Arrrggghh-otron

      Re: Bring back X.121 addressing

      I just had horrible flash backs about X.25 follow closely by a brief chill brought on by the memory of 10BASE2 and Token Ring... <sits in corner, rocks back and forth while clutching a 48port gigabit switch>

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Re: Bring back X.121 addressing

        Good times eh?

        Builds character.

        1. Arrrggghh-otron

          Re: Re: Re: Bring back X.121 addressing

          I'm sure it was fun at the time...

          I just had another horrible flash back about Token Ring MAU's - It put the fear in me!

          1. davemcwish

            Token Ring MAU's

            Still have one in my loft.

            1. LaeMing
              Happy

              Re: Token Ring MAU's

              "Still have one in my loft."

              Its the one you never talk about and when people come to visit, you pretend you can't hear it up there?

            2. Arrrggghh-otron

              Re: Token Ring MAU's

              BURN IT!!!

        2. mjwalshe

          Re: Re: Re: Bring back X.121 addressing

          Ah Happy days when I could have a realy cool mail address such as C=UK/CN=Neuromancer - perks of having root on the UK ADMD.

          You subs of course woudl have to make do with numeric ids like CIX or PRESTEL

  19. batfastad
    Stop

    Land of the Free

    Stop this nonsense forthwith! Though it's hardly surprising that the US is acting as internets police on .com/.net/.org

    If you look at the rules regarding .gov, .edu and .mil registrations then you'll probably see that those are restricted to US entities. Or at least were for a long time. Early in the lifetime of gTLDs the US were definitely treating them as their own, hence the rapid proliferation of ccTLDs (country-specific) eg: .ac.uk, .gov.uk in the UK as they were not allowed to register .edu and .gov

    What shocks me in this is that I bet there is nothing in my agreement with my registrar that by owning and operating a .com domain name that I am bound by US law, despite my site and myself being located outside US borders. Having said that, there probably is. As well as signing away my legal right to all my money, ever, and my first-born child etc.

    It would be interesting to see if this jurisdiction also extents to .us domains since Verisign is not the registry operator for those. Although .us is probably still operated by a US company and therefore simple to pressurise in the same manner. I guess if I just use a .com to forward to a ccTLD then all they can take down is the .com forwarder.

    What double shocks me is that if you were Joe Bloggs small software company, would they bother to pull domains that were ripping you off? Or would they only do it for companies who pay enough to the right people or for domains that are just making far too much money thank you very much?!

  20. Velv Silver badge
    Mushroom

    Threat to World Peace from a Fascist state?

    I've said it before and I'll predict it again:

    Some time in the next 50 years the worlds biggest democracy (China) will invade the dictatorship that is the USofA and will free the citizens from the tyranny of corruption and oppression.

    Despite what some people may claim, citizens in the USofA are bound by many laws that here in Europe would be ripped apart by the European Courts. The laws are enacted by a small number of very rich people who are funded (publicly and privately) by the corporations who have only their own interests in mind. There are only two political parties, and there's very little difference between the two. Voting doesn't directly elect the leaders - it only elects the electors. The USofA is at risk of becoming a neo-fascist state, and probably represents one of the biggest threats to world peace.

    I'm not anti-American. I've been, I plan to go again, and I have several American fiends. If you don't like what I say, don't just down vote, do your own research. And if you are American, stand up for your own human rights.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Threat to World Peace from a Fascist state?

      I stopped reading at "the worlds biggest democracy (China)".

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Re: Threat to World Peace from a Fascist state?

        He did say 'in 50 years' and the chances are that will be the case in 50 years...

        Their leaders have publicly stated that Democracy is their goal, but will take 30-40 years until they achieve it. they do have elections, just not so public and unless your a paid up CPC member, don't even try to get into government.. (but yes they DO have alternate parties...)

        One major difference is their leaders are actually EDUCATED in what they do...

        unlike most politicians they are actually very clever....

        1. Wombling_Free
          Mushroom

          Re: Re: Re: Threat to World Peace from a Fascist state?

          Yes, absolutely.

          No-one in the West seems to realise that the PRC really is a democracy, it is just one level up from our own.

          They simply don't allow everyone to vote. You have to prove you are worthy of voting, by being a member of the CPC. Simple. Once you are, say what you want (within reason) within the council, join whatever faction you want, vote for who you want.

          I mean really, look around you if you live in US / UK / AUS - seriously, do you REALLY think the majority of people are in any way qualified to vote? Like actually thinking deeply about issues? Or do they just vote for who was loudest, lied the most about tax cuts, hospitals & schooling, or don't even understand that under a Preferential Voting System a vote for the hippy hipster Greens is a vote for the numbskull Labor goons? And no, the Libs are just as bad!

          As for corruption - per capita I would bet that Australia has FAR more than China - we just 'legalize' it here and call it 'political donation'. Seriously - there are forms you fill in that makes it all OK, and you just 'declare' you have a conflict of interest - it just gets 'noted', you don't get actually kicked out of the council or anything (looking at you, Liverpool, NSW)

          Politcal prisoners? Yep, we've got those. Lots of deaths? Well, we have farmers committing suicide at 4 a day because of being run out of business by the likes of Coles and Woolies (ie, corporate greed & consumer stupidity), does that count?

    2. Hollerith 1

      Re: Threat to World Peace from a Fascist state?

      You mean that single-state, rigged-elections, rampant-corruption-so-bad-it-causes

      -tens-of-thousands-of-deaths-as-well-as-wasted-millions-of-pounds, crony-infested, human-rights-scoffing, intolerant democratic state we know as the PRC?

      Admittedly, this description now covers the USA...

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Threat to World Peace from a Fascist state?

      If you bothered to check, I think you will easily discover that India is actually the world's biggest democracy and that they go to quite extraordinary lengths to maintain that status.

    4. Paul_Murphy

      Re: Threat to World Peace from a Fascist state?

      >and I have several American fiends

      I think you missed a 'r' out there - or maybe it was a freudian slip :-)

      ttfn

    5. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Threat to World Peace from a Fascist state?

      outside the china joke can't argue it

      Other day I was telling someone who I was talking about the USSR that we should just rename the USA to the USSA with how things are going, and hope some country frees us citizens from the tyranny of the government which is ran by the insanely rich.

      As for the next election the sad thing is I hate Obama, but currently with the nut cases on the republican side running for the ability to run for president I don't see any hope at all for this country. Only hope next election that I see is Obama winning again, and I'm hoping this country doesn't tank completely in the 2nd term (which it has a decent chance of doing)

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Stop

        Re: Re: Threat to World Peace from a Fascist state?

        Obviously I don't know the guy, but President Obama seems like a decent enough chap.

        I wonder if I would fare better trying to reform an organisation as corrupt and entrenched as the US administration as him. It's not a job I would volunteer for.

        American politics: you're either with us, or you're agin us.

  21. Gordon Pryra

    @AC 9:03

    "If its not, then that means I can be arrested for doing something in my country which is legal, but isn't in another"

    The UK seem to be deporting their own people to the yanks for any reason at all right now, so yes.

    They don't seem to be able to deport actual enemy's of state though, as all no handed terrorists can attest (though I guess this would change fast if the Yanks told us to)

  22. Bunker_Monkey
    WTF?

    So what the hell happens if I post something sue'able on facebook.com

    Well? Am I liable to US Law too then????

    Help! Looks like we might as well be joining the USA as the 52nd state then??

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: So what the hell happens if I post something sue'able on facebook.com

      Of course you are.

      Or if you post anything on Google's properties.

      Or even if you host services with Amazon.

      Only way out is to not use US companies anywhere on the chain (good luck with that)

    2. mark 63 Silver badge
      Holmes

      Re: So what the hell happens if I post something sue'able on facebook.com

      whats the 51st state?

      1. Maty

        Re: Re: So what the hell happens if I post something sue'able on facebook.com

        Canada, it would appear.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Canada

          Maybe they'll get pissed off and invade.

          With our military on the other side of the planet they might win.

          Then I'd get better health care.

  23. Mad Mike
    FAIL

    And they said the Nazis/Soviet Union/North Korea/China lost/are losing.

    It's incredible really how history comes around. The USofA have spent huge amounts of money and laid down millions of lives fighting for freedom around the world and yet the USof A ends up just like them. Arbritary decisions, laid down by owned laymakers, enforced by owned judiciary. Did the west really beat Nazi Germany? Arguably, the USofA is doing many of the same things. Sames goes for the Soviet Union, North Korea, China etc.etc.

    It comes to something when you look at these countries/entities and lament how free they were/are compared to the USofA.

    There must be a lot of people turning in their graves now.

    1. arrbee
      Coat

      "There must be a lot of people turning in their graves now."

      Could be the next revolution in 'green' power generation.

  24. Primo

    Direct-to-consumer drug advertising is illegal in Canada and in Mexico , but US companies still do it. Is that not directly comparable?

    And despite some claims about where the money goes, this hasn't been done to prevent terrorism, so why is the DHS involved?

    1. Irony Deficient

      this and that

      Primo, the direct-to-consumer drug advertising could be directly comparable. In the case of online ads for such products on a .ca or .mx domain, then I’d say that they would be directly comparable. In the case of over-the-air TV commercials broadcast from Detroit and viewable in Windsor, or broadcast from El Paso and viewable in Ciudad Juárez, then I’d say that they wouldn’t be directly comparable.

      In your view, should there be a response from the Canadian and Mexican governments that targets such USA-based advertising? If so, what would an appropriate response be?

      As to why the DHS was involved, my guess is that their involvement came through the Secret Service, which is currently part of DHS. (The Secret Service and the FBI have joint jurisdiction on “computer crimes”; the Secret Service’s rôle comes through its remit to protect the nation’s financial systems. Before the DHS was established, the Secret Service was part of the Treasury department.)

  25. Vanir

    China et al

    Sometime in the future China may apply this same strategy / tactic to American citizens and companies. It will be interesting to observe the reaction of the USA.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: China et al

      To be fair China can - and does - simply block sites via their centralised firewall rules.

      The US goes to these lengths of killing DNS entries because they don't have such a capability - yet.

  26. jubtastic1
    FAIL

    Another nail in the root DNS coffin

    They'll be right sorry when it inevitably fragments and they lose control of it.

    Muppets.

  27. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    If only that ITU treaty had already been passed.

    You know, the one all those Americans are up in arms about, because of how it would give dirty furriners control over the internet? Yeah, as opposed to the arbitrary and unjust control that the USA has over it right now.

    That treaty starts to look real appealing to the entire rest of the world except for the USA right about now. Maybe they should arbitrarily steal a whole bunch more of other people's domains, just to show what a disaster it would be if this ability was taken away from them.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: If only that ITU treaty had already been passed.

      But but but, isn't the UN treaty "a threat to Internet Freedom"?

      http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052970204792404577229074023195322.html

  28. SYNTAX__ERROR
    Mushroom

    "federal law prohibits [parties] from flouting [US] law...

    ...simply because they are located outside the country" said US attorney Rod Rosenstein in a statement.

    Or in other words, the US believes it is perfectly reasonable to impose their laws on the rest of the world.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: "federal law prohibits [parties] from flouting [US] law...

      No, some flunkies in our Guvment think that they can apply our laws on other countries. I agree with the other gentleman, why the hell was DHS involved? Or for that matter the Effa Bee Eye? Patriot Act was one of the worst things to happen to our civil rights over this side of the pond

      1. Keep Refrigerated
        Mushroom

        "Patriot Act was one of the worst things to happen..."

        I beg to differ. The NDAA has now taken over as <b>the</b> worst thing to happen to yours <i>and the rest of the world's</i> civil rights over your side of the pond.

        http://www.aclu.org/blog/content/president-obama-signs-indefinite-detention-law

        Signed and approved by President Obama.

        1. Ty Cobb

          Re: "Patriot Act was one of the worst things to happen..."

          Except that the phrase "one of the worst" allows for other bad things, perhaps even worse than the one stated

  29. mark 63 Silver badge

    Are merkin govt gonna start the "War On Gambling" ? ?

    I wish I lived in the land of the Land of the Free!

    1. Richard 120

      They already are

      But only if the "house" is outside America.

      If it's inside America and pays it's taxes then it's fine.

      They call it protectionism and they say that people shouldn't do it.

      I'm guessing they mean that people outside of America shouldn't do it.

  30. Cameron Colley

    Time to boycott American products then.

    Just pissed off I have a .com domain now though -- and waiting for rendition due to email sent through it.

    Can't beleive I paid these fascist fucks to go on puritanical witch hunts.

    Hopefully economic problems will "Destroy America".

  31. Maty

    so let's see ...

    Are we going to accept the principle that what you do on the net - legally in your own country - makes you liable for prosecution anywhere in the world that disagrees with that activity?

    Thing is, though the US case is understandable, this is a dangerous idea. Just to use a random example, if someone in the USA makes a joking comment about the King of Thailand on his facebook page, he might now find his next holiday in Thailand longer and less pleasant than expected.

    International travel is going to be so much fun if we all have to first compare our (legal) internet activities in the past against the laws of whatever country we might visit in the future.

    As an example in Iran at the moment, a Canadian sits in jail awaiting the death sentence because he wrote a program which was used to upload porn onto the internet - though he did not do the uploading. (Ok, visiting Iran is a dodgy proposition at any time, but the guy had a sick father there. )

    The US is exercising the same principle. That you are liable in their country for activity on the net which is legal in your own country.

    Good intentions can set dangerous precedents.

    1. Loyal Commenter Silver badge

      Re: so let's see ...

      Your comment about Thailand is interesting. I seem to recall a couple of British tourists in America getting into trouble recently because they had joked on Facebook that they were going to 'Destroy America' and 'Dig up Marilyn Monroe' before leaving for the US. Their holiday was certainly less pleasant than expected, so the US already seems to be applying this sort of faulty reasoning.

  32. Shane Kent

    WTF...

    F-n US gov, it is plenty fine that for decades Canadians go to Vegas to gamble?

    Notice I said US Gov, and not USA as that would imply I hate the country. Love the country and the people, just can't stand their government.

    This goes with the soft wood lumber dispute, and scream protectionism. Well, our soft wood lumber is now going east, and it would appear that more and more of our trade will go east. Canada will continue to benefit more and more going to China, will the USA?

  33. Mectron

    This is a ACT OF WAR FROM AMERICA

  34. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    .htaccess

    If the Department of Homeland Security seriously wanted people from a part of the US to not access a website they should have asked to have a load of "deny from x.x.x.x/cidr" not deny the entire planet from being able to access a website, or get the credit cards to auto decline betting charges if you live in whereever the hell your not allowed to bet.

    After that copyright law the Americans almost removed most useful websites a wee while back, SOPA was it?, maybe we should get all American IP addresses, because I'd be more than happy to block any american from all of my websites!

    Wasn't .us recently setup for America?

  35. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    re: Extradition from Canada

    @James Micallef

    Canada would willingly extradite Mr. Ayre should he ever return to Canada, and be noticed by anyone that had authority to hold him.

    Last I heard he was bunkered down in Costa Rica which has a signed extradition treaty with the US, since he has not broken any law in Canada (at least he hasn't been accused of that as yet), Canada has no beef with Mr Ayre, nor need to provide extradition to the US. The US should simply request extradition from Costa Rica, and since he is not a Costa Rican national, they should have no issue with handing him over.

    Except for all of the money he brings to Costa Rica, maybe they will have a problem with that.

    --AC because my uname/pword aren't working right now, and I am too lazy to do anything about it, and perhaps that will break a Maryland law and I wouldn't want to get extradited to the US.

  36. NoneSuch
    FAIL

    I am betting...

    samsung.com

    htc.com

    nokia.com

    will be turned off by Apple the next time they win an injunction.

    Just wait.

  37. Cardinal

    Be very afraid ...

    According to 'Flagfox' (the Firefox add-on), El Reg's server for this page is located in the U.S.!

    I can see them preparing the extradition warrants for some of you lot right now!

  38. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    .com is under US jurisdiction?

    Lawyer needed but doesn't .com = US jurisdiction mean that Mr. Justice Eady gets to keep his nose out of .com sites when libel alleged? It can't be both UK and US jurisdiction (unless the law truly is an ass, which we should allow as a possibility), and if the US "owns" .com then anything on a .com site is published under US law. Alternatively, if it's "published" where the server is hosted, it's under that jurisdiction. Not just gambling sites, all sites.

    Maryland: gambling illegal. Bodog didn't gamle in Maryland.

    Maryland: running gaming website illegal. AFAIK they didn't run it in Maryland.

    Maryland: gambling illegal - so arrest the people doing the gambling.

    Maryland: advertising gambling illegal. Quick, go to every single travel agent / tour operator, destroy any brochure featuring Las Vegas that contains any image or other content in any way related to gaming, and shut the agent/operator down, together with any service provider that assists them (airlines, for example).

    Or,

    Maryland: gambling illegal but we'll overlook the activities of voters breaking the law, this being election time'n'all, and just go for the option that will generate headlines instead.

    Once again, law beats logic.

    And people wonder why lawyers and governments get a bad press.

  39. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    SEO impacts

    After working on the link building campaign of a certain well known online gaming website, I'll tell you that the biggest effect of something like this is the huge loss of natural search traffic. After spending 50k+ per month on links, it's a real bitch when someone comes and takes your domain away.

  40. Dylan Fahey
    Unhappy

    What's this?

    Spreading democracy, one domain at a time.

    We went from a great country, to a bag full of idiotic religious right wing fruitcakes in 8 years. Thanks Bush v2.0 . Guys and Gals overseas, I say to you. This is our government, not the people. The vast majority of us love freedom. However, a bunch of born again christian fundamentalists have infiltrated our government and are using the 'high ground' as a way to 'enforce' their stupid crapola on everyone else. The 'man on the street' here in America is bewildered by shit like this. When there are terrorists on the streets in Afghanistan and Syria, this is what is important to do right now, close a domain! When there are 10's of thousands of people inside our jails for smoking a joint, this is what is important, close a domain. When fuel prices are rocketing through the roof, this is what is important, close a domain.

    FUCK America's government, it is SO BROKEN.

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