A quick comment on the hoo-ha regarding .ly (Libyan) domain names.
The recent controversy started when the ‘owner’ of the vb.ly domain name found that her adult content link shortening service was terminated without notice, because it was being used for “activities/purpose not permitted under Libyan law”. The other partner in the vb.ly domain name posted an article titled “The .ly domain space to be considered unsafe“. No shit!
What made anyone think a Libyan domain name was going to be “safe”? When you lease a domain name from a foreign registry you are totally beholden to their rules – and whims.
I registered a .me domain name (the allocated top level domain for Montenegro), which is managed by a Montenegrin joint venture. It’s a great name but I do half expect that it could stop working one day and so I don’t use it for mission critical purposes.
The hypocrisy of the Americans is laughable. USA has been an enemy of the Gaddafi regime in Libya ever since he seized power after a coup d’état in 1970. They bombed the capital Tripoli in 1986 and were highly critical of the Scottish government’s decision to release Lockerbie bomber al-Megrahi (a Libyan national).
The United States only restored full diplomatic relations with Libya in 2006, but somehow seem perfectly comfortable with developing web businesses that are totally dependent on Libya’s fragile domain name registry.
How services such as bit.ly and ad.ly have attracted millions of dollars in VC funding when they are built on such potentially unstable foundations is a mystery.