Last October, the High Court in London handed down a judgment to BT, one of the UK’s largest Internet service providers. The injunction – the first of its type in UK history – ordered BT to block subscriber access to Usenet indexing site Newzbin2 on copyright grounds.
Although Newzbin2 anticipated the result and had already prepared circumvention software to enable BT users to carry on using the site, it still has a key vulnerability – its US-seizable .COM domain. According to the site’s operators, that weakness is now being addressed.
“Newzbin is leaving the American Internet. In a couple of weeks we will cease to use the newzbin.com domain and move to newzbin2.es,” says the site’s Mr White.
“We regret the need to do this but, thanks to the retards in the US Government and the MPA, a ‘.com’ address is no longer viable. Really, any domain controlled by the US government proxy Verisign isn’t viable.”
No exact date has been given for the switch but it will be during the next few weeks. For “legal reasons” the old .COM domain, which Newzbin2’s operators say is currently rented from a 3rd party, will not redirect or even provide a link to the new Spanish domain.
During 2012 it’s expected that the site’s unblocking tool will see wider use as other ISPs are also expected to begin blocking Newzbin2. But according to the site, thus far censorship has had the opposite effect.
“I can’t give exact figures but an executive summary would be that, from our Apache logs, traffic grew steadily over 2011 with a big spike about the time we were blocked; down a little since then, but still at higher levels than ever before,” Mr White told TorrentFreak.
“Overall the MPA’s web blocking has had something of a Streisand Effect on our traffic levels. It seems that they are driving users to us. Our best friend is our worst enemy,” he notes.
Nevertheless, Newzbin2’s operators aren’t simply cruising. Mr White told TorrentFreak that they intend to use the trust they’ve built up in the community to launch a secure VPN service which will not only allow anonymous Internet use, but will also defeat site-blocking measures.
But surprisingly, especially given the astonishing MegaUpload-related developments of the last week, they also intend to launch a cyberlocker service.
“Our reaction to Megaupload and the fallout was twofold. On the one level this is a very important case because if New Zealand extradite Dotcom to the US, which is where the smart money is I reckon, it will be a fascinating exhibition of the MPA’s legal strategy against cyberlockers. It may be the feds prosecuting but we all know that the MPA’s hand is up their puppet ass,” says Mr White.
“The shame for Dotcom was only that he didn’t spend his money on politicians & cops rather than godawful pink Cadillacs. And how INTERESTING that the FBI have shown publicly that they really can backdoor Skype,” he added.
Mr White described the ensuing pandemonium in the cyberlocker market as “like a herd of elephants being frightened by bees” and advised site operators who have done nothing wrong to “man up and show some spine.”
Newzbin2 assure us that their forthcoming service will be “legal from the ground up” but predict their service will receive “sniping from the malodorous content dinosaurs.”
In an uncertain world and even more uncertain cyberlocker market, that last prediction is probably the most certain we’ve heard all week.