As of 2013 there approximately a quarter of a billion registered domain names on the web and the majority end in “.com”. Network Solutions charges a wholesale price of $7.85 per year for the annual rental fee for the domain. This is a lot of steady money going to Network Solutions each year for something that is based solely on policy. What would it be like to change the rental model to a sales model? For Network Solutions, their peers, and the registrars like GoDaddy, the multi-billion dollar cash flow would shrink to the mere millions. For domain holders, the annual fee would be gone and they would truly become domain owners.
ShofarDomain uses rootless TLD (Top Level Domain like “.com”) technology that removes the central control of ICANN and allows all TLDs to operate as autonomous peers. Domain holders are no longer are at the whim of the TLD operator, but hold a digital key that makes them the final authority and the true owner of their domain. TLD owners no longer have to be massive corporations, but could potentially be a high school student on a farm in Iowa, or a family in Latvia. They would all be peers to Network Solutions and the like.
The original goal was to be operational by December 2012. We didn’t make it but in March of 2013 servers at Microsoft and Amazon datacenters went live resolving ICANN domains, alternative root domains, and rootless domains. We have maturing to do, but the world can see that rootless technology works!
The Internet is bases on published standards known as RFCs. RFC-1035, published in 1987, is the standard for DNS. Updates have occurred but remain compatible with the original standard. As long as we remain compatible with the RFCs, we can do most anything on the Internet and still work with everyone else. ShofarDomain’s rootless TLD technology is compatible with all relevant RFCs.
A driving force behind ShofarDomain and the rootless TLDs is the political pressure being put on the web. It is easy to find stories about domain names being seized from holders. The UN made it clear at the WCIT 2012 meeting in Dubai that their goal is to take control of the Internet and being the final authority on domain names is a high priority.
Government monitoring of Internet traffic is now pervasive with many making permanent records of all DNS traffic. This is a fundamental part of Big Brother on steroids. While being compatible with the monitored DNS, ShofarDomain also offers an alternative secure method of doing DNS queries which is a building block to the unmonitorable ShofarPortfolio technology.
Throughout history power tends to centralize and become corrupt. Where autonomous people exist they tend to thrive. ICANN has already demonstrated corruption and “excessive funds”. We have described the rootless TLD as the “Second Amendment for Domain Names” and remember the Amendment was to prevent tyranny.
It is controlling tyranny that is the driving force behind ShofarDomain and the companion projects. We bow the knee to ICANN and the UN or we stand together as autonomous peers.