Laurel L. Russwurm's Free Culture Blog

a writer, the copyfight and internet freedom

GoDaddy is OK with

with 15 comments

In my initial outrage about the death threat domain names, The other day I dented:

“Corporations aren’t human; if they were, the word would be “Sociopath” as in @GoDaddy is a sociopathic corporation”


But then I decided to follow @jwildeboer‘s fine example and fired off an email to GoDaddy. It is, after all, always good to find out the truth.

GO Daddy logo

GoDaddy response

Well, seems I was right the first time.

As promised, here’s the email response from GoDaddy, verbatim:

Dear Laurel L. Russwurm,

The domain is directing to the IP of, which is not an IP allocated to Go Daddy. According to an IP whois it is allocated to Hoosier PC SBC. Go Daddy is not hosting the content. We have neither access to, nor jurisdiction over the content on this site. The web hosting provider for this website is the company responsible for policing any content that appears on this site.

There is no content currenlty resolving on the domains and

As your complaint addresses the issue of wording of the domain name itself, we are unable to take action at this time. The complaint either needs to be taken up with the domain name owner directly, or should be filed in a UDRP or court proceeding.

If you find that you are unable to contact the registrant because the contact information given in the Whois database is invalid, please write to and let us know.


Spam and Abuse Department

GoDaddy is off the hook for because it isn’t one of theirs.

And without content, could argued to be ambiguous; after all, barring immortality, we all must die sooner or later.

But there is no ambiguity about:

‘Kill Julian Assange’ is a three word grouping that is short, sharp and to the point.

Whatever anyone thinks of the man, Julian Assange is a real person.

A human being.

Prefacing the proper name of a real person with the verb “kill” is most certainly a death threat.

Or at the least, a directive.

Of course, I am not a lawyer. And as a Canadian, I’m not sure if death threats are protected by free speech or qualify as a crime south of the border.

GoDaddy thinks it isn’t an issue.

Does that mean GoDaddy would issue a or a domain name?

Just asking.

15 Responses

Subscribe to comments with RSS.

  1. The domain name “” for example was registered at GoDaddy on 16-Feb-11 – and confiscated in no time. Convince yourself:


    May 11, 2012 at 12:54 pm

  2. […] a fistful of domain names and leave them cooling on a shelf for three years. Although you’ll never catch me dealing with GoDaddy, as I understand it anyone can register a domain with them for a couple of dollars. It could cost […]

  3. hello laurel, we just found the page. sry for not linking here earlier. updated and your page linked now on


    January 19, 2011 at 7:51 am

  4. […] As your complaint addresses the issue of wording of the domain name itself, we are unable to take action at this time. The complaint either needs to be taken up with the domain name owner directly, or should be filed in a UDRP or court proceeding. …” (note: we received this answer forwarded by the receipient, but the answer was made publicly available by the receipient herself, too. you’ll find the full copy here). […]

  5. […] For more on “Death Threat Domain Names” and GoDaddy, check out this illuminating blogpost and a curious response from the company here. […]

    My Own Private Guantanamo

    January 19, 2011 at 3:26 am

  6. […] אנשים ל-Godaddy בבקשה שימחקו את הדומיינים המאיימים וכאשר התקבלה התשובה שלדעת החברה אין כל פסול בדומיינים שנקנו, ניצת ויכוח […]

  7. […] GoDaddy is OK with […]

  8. Also, a quick check would answer your question as to whether equivalent Palin or Obama domain names have been or could be registered. I would do it myself but I’m on my phone and well…you know.


    January 14, 2011 at 12:20 pm

    • The only way to find out if they could be registered would be to register and see what happens. I don’t believe that anyone should make death threats, whether in domain names or anywhere else. So I am not about to register one.

      I did, however, do a search the other day. The upshot was that of the hundreds of domain names that include President Obama’s name, not a single one also includes the word “kill.”

      Whether people have tried to register any such names and been denied, or have ended up in Guantanamo Bay for so doing is unknown. I’m merely an obscure Canadian blogger without the resources that a real journalist could bring to bear on such an investigation.

      [Note: I may check in to approve future comments, but will reserve any of my own replies until after my editing session is complete. This is getting far too much like blogging. — regards, laurel l. russwurm]

      Laurel L. Russwurm

      January 14, 2011 at 1:37 pm

  9. Shouldn’t free speech include registering whatever domain name we please. I think these domain names are disgusting but I absolutely defend the registrants right to own them and Godaddy’s right to allow them to be registered.


    January 14, 2011 at 12:16 pm

    • I realize it’s different here in Canada we have laws limiting hate speech.
      In Canada, death threats are considered a crime, not free speech.

      Even anyone who “counsels another person to commit an offence” has committed the same crime as if they had committed it.

      Human Rights Day #freebyron #chargeflanagan

      Of course, I’ve recently learned that these laws are only applied to ordinary people in our version of democracy; apparently people like the University of Calgary’s Professor Tom Flanagan, by virtue of his close association with our sitting government, are considered above the law.

      Because I stubbornly believe that no one should be above the law, I will continue to write about Tom Flanagan’s criminal behaviour until he faces legal consequences.

      The rest of the articles I’ve written about this travesty (so far) can be found in my Oh! Canada blog as follows:

      Unspeakable: Tom Flanagan and #WikiLeaks

      Loose Ties make WikiLeaks Strong

      No Bail #freejulian #freebyron

      #Flanagan again

      Laurel L. Russwurm

      January 14, 2011 at 1:23 pm



    January 14, 2011 at 9:16 am

    • As you point out so graphically, it doesn’t take much to get the gist of even the longest grouping of words in a domain name.

      Nice redirect. Thanks wquoyle!

      Another good redirect can be found at Artificial Eyes who direct us to a new tracker site for cyber-bullying domain names of wikileaks associates.

      This new site was started by twitterer @carwinb in an effort to fight cyber bullying through exposure of the perpetrators. As @exiledsurfer‘s cool logo indicates, assassination politics is NOT OK.

      I also love @exiledsurfer’s mantra:

      I. exiledsurfer, EXPLICITLY denounce ALL death threats or exhortations of violence against any political figure or citizen, regardless of their stripe, and respectfully suggest that other people do the same.

      And I especially love Vivant Leakers’ tag line:

      We are watching. We are not afraid.

      Kind of like a cyber-neighborhood watch.:)

      [Yes. I know I’m busted, but I *had* to check my email… and peek at the microblogs… but my justification is that this isn’t really like blogging… and now back to the radio silence I need to work on my novel.]

      Laurel L. Russwurm

      January 14, 2011 at 10:04 am

  11. […] thing in psychopathic anti-Wikileaks action! GoDaddy’s Domains by Proxy service is apparently the go-to registrar if you’ve got a public figure of your own in mind. [Vivant leakers via Artificial […]

  12. Update via

    jwildeboer [says]

    So our collective efforts worked for 2 out of 3 domains. 1 to go!

    cc @laurelrusswurm
    — Jan Wildeboer

    Laurel L. Russwurm

    January 13, 2011 at 3:50 pm

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s


Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 1,880 other followers