Date: Sat, 5 Oct 1996 22:02:34 +0100

From: (MediaFilter)

The Liberation of NameSpace

Paul Garrin

Stalinistic limitations on the possibilities of network names are a legacy of the cold war mentality which exists in the current "domain" name system (DNS) of the internet. The "organizational" nature of net names reflect the bureaucratic, militaristic mindset of the centralized agency, InterNIC, now operating as a private, highly profitable monopoly called Network Solutions, Inc. The very term "Domain" refers to "dominion" or "domination". The net with supposedly no borders (another myth) is "organized" into territories--"domains" and "zones of authority"--all total contradictions to the nature of the network: to dissolve all borders.

The intitative grows out of a movement to de-militarize the mindset of the net and open it up to more democratic models. By freeing the constraints of naming conventions imposed by the central authority, the NIC, the artificial shortages created by the command economy of names will disappear, and take along with it the name speculators who bought up thousands of names (for $100 each) in hopes of auctioning them off to the highest bidder. has begun the liberation of the network namespace by creating a network of alternative root nameservers on the net and making them available to all who wish to use them. seeks to support artistic and independent content by providing new names for projects and virtual net addresses to support websites named in namespace.

This is an open call for participation to creators of net-based works, to request names for their projects, which will be presented at first via links from the site. Network administrators are invited to switch their named.cache file from the internic version to the version which lists the root servers in place of the internic servers. Users are invited to change their local tcp/ip nameserver settings to the server network. Instructions on how to do this reside at the website.

The Winter Palace is about to be stormed! in NYC ( has been successfully running the servers as root for over 2 weeks providing their users with access to all the names in in addition to all the "traditional" net names. The rest of the net will be next!

Other participating networks include:

- ( <--lt;--

- internationale stadt, Berlin ( <--lt;--

- muuMediaBase, Helsinki ( <--lt;--

- LOIS, Ljubljana ( <--lt;--

-, NY ( <--lt;--

- mediafilter, NY (<--lt;--

More information can be found at the website

The time is now to dissolve the monopoly on names and bring down the centralized command economy of Network Solutions, Inc. (a.k.a. InterNIC).