Tuesday, 14 December 2010

Killing the Kill Switch

Secrets outlet WikiLeaks' continuing struggle to remain online in the face of corporate and government censorship is a striking example of something few truly realize: that the Internet is not and never has been democratically controlled, a media studies professor commented to Raw Story.

"[T]he stuff that goes on on the Internet does not go on because the authorties can't stop it," Douglas Rushkoff, author of Program or be Programmed: Ten Commands for a Digital Age and Life, Inc.: How Corporatism Conquered the World and How to Take it Back", said. "It goes on because the authorities are choosing what to stop and what not to stop."

Rushkoff told Raw Story that the authorities have the ability to quash cyber dissent due to the Internet's original design, as a top-down, authoritarian device with a centralized indexing system.

Essentially, all one needs to halt a rogue site is to delete its address from the domain name system registry.


New servers for Wikileaks are a reminder of some of the folks who are working on entirely new solutions to avoid being shutdown in the future. Here’s Dave’s list of alternative web resources of scary smart people working to kill the kill switch.

http://dyne.org/ – check out Jaromil and his community mesh network tool that creates alternative nodes that bypass the internet entirely and will run on any computer that has a cd rom… no installation necessary. That’s right, no installation… plus it comes with its own built-in radio station.

netsukuku - is a peer-to-peer alternative routing system from the fine folks ata FreakNet MediaLab and Andrea La Pumo. It can run across the internet or bypass blockages when necessary through tunneling. It’s essentially a way to escape from the potential tyranny of ICANN and DNS control when necessary and ride the web when not. The whole thing runs on NIC cards. Here’s Andrea’s Linked In profile displaying his PhD in computer science: http://it.linkedin.com/in/lopumo

diaspora – http://blog.joindiaspora.com/ This is how you would get rid of that creepy feeling that comes along with the “too much information for an internet eternity on Facebook” with your own private, yet social network. These guys are giving groups, companies and individuals a chance to be smart and load their own controlled app for social media.

dot-p2p – http://dot-p2p.org/index.php?title=Main_Page This is a start-up in response to last week’s shutdowns by the Attorney General of the United States in accordance with the COICA regulations for anti-counterfeiting. According to the project’s website, the goal is to “create an application that runs as a service and hooks into the hosts DNS system to catch all requests to the .p2p TLD while passing all other request cleanly through. Requests for the .p2p TLD will be redirected to a locally hosted DNS database.”


1 comment:

McKinnon's Modem said...

Good article.

Incidentally, did you hear about the new Intel processors?

"The new hardware allows help desks to remotely shut down laptops over 3G networks, even when an OS is not running."