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About WHOIS privacy and financial transactions for commerical activities

  • To: comments-ppsai-initial-05may15@xxxxxxxxx
  • Subject: About WHOIS privacy and financial transactions for commerical activities
  • From: cosechy <cosechy@xxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Wed, 8 Jul 2015 01:09:57 +0800

Basically you are doing something that is not your task. There is nothing
can stop someone just use their IP addresses for commercial activities.
Banks or 3rd party payment companies can do it much better if the
informations are needed for some reasons.

If someone wants some private informations, but don't want to use the
formal procedure, it's better to assume they may want to do something bad.
And those informations are not firm guarantee. There are scams using
apparently legitimate contact informations (and without publicly known bad
records) to make them seemed better. People still cannot get their money
back. And the real informations of most people who need the privacy
protection are not well known anyway. They had practically no good uses.

One thing I can imagine is that, there are people believing in random
pushed advertisements from untrusted locations without careful
investigation (and the same website can switch payment methods rapidly),
which is horrible. But they can never be helped. Someone can still sell
them overpriced but completely legal products.

Thinking privacy and freedom as just something abstract is a severe
ignorance. And their sole purpose is for the not-too-few edge cases that
you cannot expect and cannot make them work as you have designed. Let's
say, someone anonymously wrote a free game and installed a forum on their
server. Other users wrote some game mods, and finally, one user decided to
receive donations (using some easy ways like listing their bank account),
and optionally accept feature requests from the donors. It is unclear
whether this counts as financial transactions for commercial purpose. But
most likely it will count in a formal definition. This may finally make
anonymously running such a site infeasible.

Moreover, for a free blogging service, it would cost much for the owner to
either verify or block (which also hurts) any commercial activities, and it
isn't fair for them to take responsibilities. If users cannot be stopped
before visiting this site, it would be sure this kind of moderation is as

Though I am strongly against revealing the WHOIS informations in this case,
agreeing or not, at least you should know it will cause some severe
problems. So you cannot decide that with only a brief idea. Even if it can
make something really much better, it's still better to respect the local
jurisdictions for those problems.

There are also technique issues. For example, there may be different people
taking responsibilities for multiple products in the same site. There is no
reason to disallow that, at least if the domain owner verified their
identity but don't have commercial relations. Listing the informations of
all of them in WHOIS is impractical for now. And if it only lists one, the
users still know nothing about them. Rules from the banks receiving money
(if there is any) should be much more reliable. If there are no such rules
yet, again, it's better to trust local jurisdictions. You may want a
universal rule for many other things for good reasons, but in this case, if
even the local law doesn't care, the rule is just useless.

As in the standard template, I urge you to respect Internet users' rights
to privacy and due process. But you have seemed to receive enough of them.

Hang Y

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