Recently we revised the IPv6Now site. I’d noticed that non-tech people often stumbled when faced with the term IPv6. They’d say something like ip (as in trip) ver six, and then stop in confusion. Not a good thing. So I thought of simplifying the name – perhaps we could get 6n0w.com or 6n0w.net? (That ‘0’ should be an ‘o’ but I’ve replaced it, so some readers will not be blocked from this post…)
6n0w.com wasn’t playing – the speculator who’d grabbed it believing any digit+3-letter name was Gold, Pure Gold!, wanted thousands. So I checked out 6n0w.net. It was on one of those boilerplate aggregator sites, a picture of some merry folk skiing, a few irrelevant ads, and a link saying the name was for sale at GoDaddy.com. It was on offer for about $280, and our Financial Consigliere thought we had enough pocket-money that week to buy it, so I did.
All went well. We had a great new site plus a cute, memorable domain name, ready just in time for World IPv6 Launch on 6 June: what could go wrong? Cue ominous music …
I asked a friend at the TV station SBS to check the site out. He said, that’s funny. It’s blocked, but don’t worry, our tech department’s always doing weird things. So I didn’t worry. I wrote an edition of our IPv6 newsletter The Standard and sent it to our mailing-list on World IPv6 Launch day. Then I heard from a colleague who works for a government department that our newsletter had been blocked: “category pornography, malicious sources, malicious outbound data/botnets”. And email from him that simply mentioned the domain name was blocked too, for “profanity outbound”.
What? Really? My mind reeling, I looked at the site logs. There, since we’d implemented the new name, was a bunch of ‘Document not found’ 404 errors, with requests from porn sites for files that must once have been on the site with the happy skiers, but, trust me, were definitely not on our new site. I suspect the old site, just un-maintained boilerplate for selling the domain name, had at some stage been cracked and used as a porn repository. And then its domain name had been placed on some Secret Government Black List. Oh dear.
Our new site is out at 6now.com.au, 6now.net.au and ipv6now.com.au, and if you live in the real world, you can also get to it via 6n0w.net (change 0 to o). But if you live behind a blacklist, you won’t get there, at least not until the list gets revised …
Anyway, check it out, and if you’re blocked please tell me, and also ask your tech department to whitelist it. And no jokes about New Zealand accents, either.