Joi Ito's Web

Joi Ito's conversation with the living web.

The ultimate outrage: Rusty Lewis of VeriSign says this is a test for the Net, to see whether the infrastructure can be innovated. It's a threat: Let us do what we want or we won't invest in upgrading infrastructure, he implies.

In response to a question, he bascially indicates that ICANN doesn't have the power to keep VeriSign from doing what it's done. The company will have a dialogue with whoever wants to talk, but it plans to "reintroduce" Site Finder.

I think VeriSign has already won the key part of this war. It has persuaded reporters to call Site Finder a "service" instead of what it truly is, a misuse of its monopoly.

This sounds really bad. How can a company that tries to sell trust act in such a blatantly untrustworthy way...


I was outraged when I read yesterday a Verisign exec saying that Sitefinder is innovative and challenges the status quo. Joi's point is right on, Versign is the status quo.

Give us their phone number :-)

Or better, somebody (?) set up a site where people can sign a protest letter, with copy to ICANN or better, official support from ICANN...

Actives users of Internet have to be vocal about this.

Has anyone calculated how much $ value Verisign gets from this SiteFinder trick?

I mean, how many unregistered domain names are there out there ? And if we count 15$ for a domain name.. What is the price VeriSign should pay to use SiteFinder?

Just to get an idea.

Or, looking at it from another perspective, how much would you have to pay Verisign to forego the profits they can make by implementing SiteFinder?

Obviously they will make money from this. If people decide that this is really wrong, then some powers have to be legally taken away from Verisign, otherwise, the incentive for profit rules.

I don't think this is a test of the infrastructure, it was a petty hack that went against recommendations for the operation of the top-level domains and against the Internet as a community. When companies like VeriSign start making decisions like these, they are never with a thought for the consumers, it is always selfish and always greedy.

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After a ton on complaints from web users Verisign agreed to shut down its SiteFinder disservice. SiteFinder redirected all mistyped and unregistered domain names to a VeriSign search page. Now they are firing back at critics saying that Net regulators... Read More