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(The Verge)   Comcast's Lawyers: "We think SOPA is just the bestest idea ever ever." Comcast's Technical Experts: "Uh, it's unpossible for us to be SOPA compliant." Now what, Beeyotches?   (theverge.com) divider line 180
    More: Fail, DNS, Techdirt, Comcast, end runs  
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17721 clicks; posted to Main » on 12 Jan 2012 at 11:46 AM (2 years ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2012-01-12 09:39:55 AM
Could someone put this in more moran friendly language?
 
2012-01-12 09:50:06 AM

LandStander: Could someone put this in more moran friendly language?


Comcast is in favor of pending anti-piracy legislation that they themselves will be unable to comply with.
 
2012-01-12 09:56:25 AM

LandStander: Could someone put this in more moran friendly language?


Ya'll please correct me if I'm wrong, I'm hardly an expert on this sorta stuff:

The Internet is a series of tubes. If I type in www.fark.com, my computer doesn't automagically know "Oh yeah, Fark, sure, I'll get right on it". Instead, it sends a message (through the tubes of course) to a DNS server, which returns a bunch of numbers (Fark's IP address). Now your computer knows where to go.

Comcast is an ISP and also sells cable and other things which they feel are harmed by them darn pirates. So their lawyers are in favor of SOPA, a bill which would allow for much easier takedowns of sites containing pirated material. One of the ways SOPA would try this is by blocking DNS resolution. So when I'd type in www.shadypiratesite.ru (or for that matter Fark once the greedy copyright lawyers have their way with it), instead of returning a bunch of numbers, it'd say "F*ck off, ya filthy pirate" and I wouldn't be able to get to the site (unless I know the IP address beforehand and type that instead).

From what I gather FTFA, Comcast's own DNS resolution system is incompatible with the type of blocking that SOPA would cause.
 
2012-01-12 10:12:35 AM
I haven't been following this SOPA stuff. Can one of you nerds link to something that gives a good overview?

/I keed, you know I loves ya.
 
2012-01-12 10:14:53 AM

coco ebert: I haven't been following this SOPA stuff. Can one of you nerds link to something that gives a good overview?

/I keed, you know I loves ya.


Link
 
2012-01-12 10:18:53 AM

coco ebert: I haven't been following this SOPA stuff. Can one of you nerds link to something that gives a good overview?


I like this story (also read the top reply to it), which imo is a simple but pretty solid and unbiased analogy.
 
2012-01-12 10:27:17 AM

RexTalionis: coco ebert: I haven't been following this SOPA stuff. Can one of you nerds link to something that gives a good overview?

/I keed, you know I loves ya.

Link


smooshie: coco ebert: I haven't been following this SOPA stuff. Can one of you nerds link to something that gives a good overview?

I like this story (also read the top reply to it), which imo is a simple but pretty solid and unbiased analogy.


Thanks!
 
ZAZ [TotalFark]
2012-01-12 11:01:42 AM
Comcast's Technical Experts: "Uh, it's unpossible for us to be SOPA complaint."

Comcast's Lawyers: Unpossible? It's easy. Stop using DNSSEC. Make it so.
 
2012-01-12 11:15:14 AM
 
2012-01-12 11:44:12 AM
I have a complaint....about subby.
 
2012-01-12 11:48:29 AM
Engineers scared of SOAP. What else is new?
 
2012-01-12 11:51:09 AM
Why would Comcast or any other ISP have to worry about SOPA?
 
2012-01-12 11:52:19 AM

AverageAmericanGuy: Engineers scared of SOAP. What else is new?


Only the italian stuff.
 
2012-01-12 11:53:33 AM

AverageAmericanGuy: Engineers scared of SOAP. What else is new?


Hint: S should not stand for Simple. We got trolled.
 
2012-01-12 11:53:59 AM

LandStander: Could someone put this in more moran friendly language?


from the third farking sentence: "...Comcast has just made itself unable to comply with key provisions of the very law it is actively championing."

/the whole article is only 100 words long
//jesus you're lazy
 
2012-01-12 11:54:15 AM

LandStander: Could someone put this in more moran friendly language?


Comcast is both a content provider, NBC, and internet provider. They don't want people downloading their shows but their own DNS isnt' SOPA compliant.

It is kind of like how Sony music/video always has some say in sony electronics products that usually ends up making them suck more than they need to.
 
2012-01-12 11:59:30 AM

LandStander: Could someone put this in more moran friendly language?


From the comments in the article:

"Actually it's even better than that.

Not are they not able to enforce SOPA, but the technology they are implementing is actually in contravention of the act as it stands. To all intents and purposes SOPA will outlaw DNSSEC.

A brief explanation:

DNSSEC is a means of preventing hacked or rogue DNS servers (the machines that turn domain names like theverge.com into IP addresses) from serving up faked results, so someone can't hack a server and pretend to be Google.com, or theverge.com or your bank.

SOPA will require ISPs to block DNS results for blocked sites. DNSSEC, when fully implemented, will do an end run around this restriction due to the way it works. It will automatically circumvent the SOPA blocks.

SOPA makes it illegal to supply, provide or develop technology, tools or services for the purposes of circumvented SOPA blocks.

So, having implemented DNSSEC, Comcast are providing a service that would be illegal under SOPA.

Even more ironic is that some of the biggest supporters of DNSSEC are the DoD, NSA and various other branches of government whose job it is to help secure the USA's infrastructure. The same goes for Tor, which is used to get around China's great firewall, and which is supported by the US government.

SOPA is an absolute clusterfsck, and demonstrates the utter hypocracy of the US political system."
 
2012-01-12 12:05:03 PM

smooshie: LandStander: Could someone put this in more moran friendly language?

Ya'll please correct me if I'm wrong, I'm hardly an expert on this sorta stuff:

The Internet is a series of tubes.


No, wait - I thought it was more like a big dump truck?
 
2012-01-12 12:05:32 PM

LandStander: Could someone put this in more moran friendly language?


Basically it's like your Grandmother getting to decide technical specifications for the internet, and she has a group of shyster lawyers advising her.
 
2012-01-12 12:06:37 PM

Voiceofreason01: LandStander: Could someone put this in more moran friendly language?

from the third farking sentence: "...Comcast has just made itself unable to comply with key provisions of the very law it is actively championing."

/the whole article is only 100 words long
//jesus you're lazy


There's a comment beneath the article that 'splains the whole thing very nicely...

"Not are they not able to enforce SOPA, but the technology they are implementing is actually in contravention of the act as it stands. To all intents and purposes SOPA will outlaw DNSSEC.

A brief explanation:

DNSSEC is a means of preventing hacked or rogue DNS servers (the machines that turn domain names like theverge.com into IP addresses) from serving up faked results, so someone can't hack a server and pretend to be Google.com, or theverge.com or your bank.

SOPA will require ISPs to block DNS results for blocked sites. DNSSEC, when fully implemented, will do an end run around this restriction due to the way it works. It will automatically circumvent the SOPA blocks.

SOPA makes it illegal to supply, provide or develop technology, tools or services for the purposes of circumvented SOPA blocks.

So, having implemented DNSSEC, Comcast are providing a service that would be illegal under SOPA.

Even more ironic is that some of the biggest supporters of DNSSEC are the DoD, NSA and various other branches of government whose job it is to help secure the USA's infrastructure. The same goes for Tor, which is used to get around China's great firewall, and which is supported by the US government.

SOPA is an absolute clusterfsck, and demonstrates the utter hipocracy of the US political system."


There's a very vocal opposition to SOPA at the University where I'm studying, both from the students, and the faculty. I've contacted both of my congress-persons to let them know that SOPA is an internet crippling piece of legislation. You should do the same.

/Wonder how Drew weighs in on this.
//If SOPA passes as is, and even one of us posts copyrighted material on FARK, then this site could be shut down and Drew could be held legally responsible.
 
2012-01-12 12:06:41 PM

smooshie: From what I gather FTFA, Comcast's own DNS resolution system is incompatible with the type of blocking that SOPA would cause.


To expand on this (with as much layman speak as possible), DNSSEC authentication is hierarchical by zone, tracing back to the root zone. For example, take www.fark.com, which requires 3 levels of authentication. First, the root zone authenticates .com. Second, .com authenticates fark.com. Finally, fark.com authenticates www.fark.com.

The technical hurdle with DNS redirection comes with the first level of zone authentication. If an ISP was tasked with redirecting fark.com to some other site, it would have to impersonate the .com zone. To do so, every ISP would have to have access to the cryptographic keys associated with the .com zone, thereby breaking the chain of trust that DNSSEC implements.

DNSSEC and SOPA are mutually exclusive.
 
2012-01-12 12:06:45 PM

coco ebert: I haven't been following this SOPA stuff. Can one of you nerds link to something that gives a good overview?


You ever heard of Wikipedia? Google? Cuz you can do this yourself now without any help from us experts. Just put "sopa" in the search box and... wow, holy shiat, out comes the answer.

images5.fanpop.com

Have you tried turning your computer off and turning it back on again?

Does your cupholder work?
 
2012-01-12 12:07:58 PM
Lawyers, marketing people and educators are the most clueless people on the planet when it comes to technology.
 
2012-01-12 12:08:18 PM
i'm kinda miffed at comcast right now. I sat down to play star wars the other night and they pulled one of their unscheduled/scheduled maint upgrade runs and yanked cable access out from under me. WTF man...just because everyone ELSE goes to bed at 9pm doesn't me I do. f*ckers.
 
2012-01-12 12:09:27 PM

clovis69: Lawyers, marketing people and educators are the most clueless people on the planet when it comes to technology.


God, don't get me started on marketing people. Explain shiat to them 10 times and they won't understand it the 11th, either.
 
2012-01-12 12:09:31 PM
If everyday websites owned by everyday people will be shutdown by SOPA for having a few bad files, but an entire ISP filled with pirated files is immune to SOPA, we have everything backwards. Like Always. rewardslink.info
 
2012-01-12 12:09:50 PM
The suits will ignore the techs, then blame them when it all blows up.

NEVER work for suits.
 
2012-01-12 12:09:55 PM

coco ebert: I haven't been following this SOPA stuff. Can one of you nerds link to something that gives a good overview?

/I keed, you know I loves ya.


The comments beneath the article essplane:
"Not are they not able to enforce SOPA, but the technology they are implementing is actually in contravention of the act as it stands. To all intents and purposes SOPA will outlaw DNSSEC.

A brief explanation:

DNSSEC is a means of preventing hacked or rogue DNS servers (the machines that turn domain names like theverge.com into IP addresses) from serving up faked results, so someone can't hack a server and pretend to be Google.com, or theverge.com or your bank.

SOPA will require ISPs to block DNS results for blocked sites. DNSSEC, when fully implemented, will do an end run around this restriction due to the way it works. It will automatically circumvent the SOPA blocks.

SOPA makes it illegal to supply, provide or develop technology, tools or services for the purposes of circumvented SOPA blocks.

So, having implemented DNSSEC, Comcast are providing a service that would be illegal under SOPA.

Even more ironic is that some of the biggest supporters of DNSSEC are the DoD, NSA and various other branches of government whose job it is to help secure the USA's infrastructure. The same goes for Tor, which is used to get around China's great firewall, and which is supported by the US government.

SOPA is an absolute clusterfsck, and demonstrates the utter hipocracy of the US political system."


Clear as Coco?
 
2012-01-12 12:11:17 PM
I really hate acronyms. At least this article actually broke it down so I know what it means.

I thought the whole SOPA outrage had to do with people hating delicious sopapillas.
 
2012-01-12 12:12:02 PM
khyberkitsune:

SOPA is an absolute clusterfsck, and demonstrates the utter hypocracy of the US political system."

It's not hypocritical, the game is "most donations wins". SOPA supporters are giving the most donations.
 
2012-01-12 12:12:40 PM

hillary: coco ebert: I haven't been following this SOPA stuff. Can one of you nerds link to something that gives a good overview?

You ever heard of Wikipedia? Google? Cuz you can do this yourself now without any help from us experts. Just put "sopa" in the search box and... wow, holy shiat, out comes the answer.

[images5.fanpop.com image 640x400]

Have you tried turning your computer off and turning it back on again?

Does your cupholder work?


stop being an asshole.
 
2012-01-12 12:13:43 PM

khyberkitsune: SOPA is an absolute clusterfsck, and demonstrates the utter hypocracy of the US political system


I'd argue it's a better demonstration of the complete ignorance and headline-oriented nature of the system. "Stop Online Piracy Act"? That sounds pretty reasonable. "Take down" piracy sites? Sure, I guess. These high-level descriptions are difficult to oppose, since the mainstream thought is that piracy is bad. The problem is that it's technically impossible. But you have to understand the technology to recognize that, and you if you oppose it for obscure technological reasons, then it quickly spins into "you support piracy!"
 
2012-01-12 12:14:00 PM
If SOPA passes, fine Comcast heavily for every day they are not compliant. Fine GoDaddy and all of them as well.
 
2012-01-12 12:14:20 PM
Another example of the brilliance of the Atlases that inhabit our corporations.

Boy would we be in a mess if these "geniuses" ever shrugged.
 
2012-01-12 12:17:15 PM

9beers: Why would Comcast or any other ISP have to worry about SOPA?


They will be required to:
a) block DNS queries on their DNS servers
b) deep packet inspections for IP address filtering
 
2012-01-12 12:19:04 PM

Nemo's Brother: If SOPA passes, fine Comcast heavily for every day they are not compliant. Fine GoDaddy and all of them as well.


here in this country we do not hold corporations responsible for compliance with the law. that would socialism! no, we allow them to write an apology and then go about their bidness.

this country only punishes the little people. preferable harshly. because that's what jesus would have wanted.
 
2012-01-12 12:23:56 PM

Madbassist1: hillary: coco ebert: I haven't been following this SOPA stuff. Can one of you nerds link to something that gives a good overview?

You ever heard of Wikipedia? Google? Cuz you can do this yourself now without any help from us experts. Just put "sopa" in the search box and... wow, holy shiat, out comes the answer.

[images5.fanpop.com image 640x400]

Have you tried turning your computer off and turning it back on again?

Does your cupholder work?

stop being an asshole.


FOAD.

What, for sending someone to Google to do their own work? Want to know how I know you have no idea how library catalog cards worked?

The irony here is that enabling this kind of intellectual laziness is a goodly part of what led to SOPA in the first place.

Strangely enough, the first two entries in Google search on SOPA lead to adecent Wikipedia article and an excellent overview by Declam McCullough of Wired. It would have taken less time for the questioner to enter SOPA into Google than it took to post the question here.

Stop being an enabler. And no, you can't copy my test results.
 
2012-01-12 12:27:46 PM

smooshie: The Internet is a series of tubes. If I type in www.fark.com, my computer doesn't automagically know "Oh yeah, Fark, sure, I'll get right on it". Instead, it sends a message (through the tubes of course) to a DNS server, which returns a bunch of numbers (Fark's IP address). Now your computer knows where to go.

Comcast is an ISP and also sells cable and other things which they feel are harmed by them darn pirates. So their lawyers are in favor of SOPA, a bill which would allow for much easier takedowns of sites containing pirated material. One of the ways SOPA would try this is by blocking DNS resolution. So when I'd type in www.shadypiratesite.ru (or for that matter Fark once the greedy copyright lawyers have their way with it), instead of returning a bunch of numbers, it'd say "F*ck off, ya filthy pirate" and I wouldn't be able to get to the site (unless I know the IP address beforehand and type that instead).


Not quite. The DNS server can't go "fark off"; it has to direct you SOMEwhere. So the DNS server would reroute you, presumably to someplace like fbihasyourIPaddress.gov or something. In other words, SOPA's "clever" solution to piracy is to forcibly redirect all attempts to access shadypiratesite.ru or other blacklisted sites (of which I'm sure fark.com will never be accidentally included) to someplace "harmless", like fbihasyourIPaddress.gov at the DNS server level.

Second, one major security issue is DNS server hacking. It's very dangerous if a hacker goes into a DNS server pretending to be yourbank.com. So when you log onto the Internet to, say, pay your mortgage, your computer sends a signal to this (hacked) DNS server asking, "hey, where's yourbank.com"? An OK server would tell your PC where and you're on your merry way. The compromised server, though, re-directs you to a bogus site the hacker made, most likely Photoshooped to be physically indistinguishable from the legit site. You think you've made a mortgage payment, but really you've done nothing except give a hacker access to your bank account. Not that Comcast gives a shiat about you, but it's a black eye for yourbank.com because even though it's the hacker's fault and Comcast's fail, the bank takes the hit and it WILL try to get its pound of flesh back in court -- targeting Comcast. So to avoid that headache, Comcast made DNS re-routing physically impossible.

Except SOPA requires it. You know, the anti-piracy law Comcast is pushing for. Oops.

As an analogy, let's say kids have wised up to the "free candy" gimmick, so now Pedobear has resorted to painting his van yellow and pretending it's a school bus. Kids are taught to mindlessly get into yellow vans, so they do (that's the DNS hack). The outraged parents, rather than doing the parenting thing, get the city to set up a seek-and-destroy Skynet-like system that targets and shoots a missile at any yellow vehicle that's NOT a school bus. This makes managing the problem simple for the kids and parents; any yellow van (or car) is deemed Pedobear and blown up. Kids can go back to safely identifying and riding the yellow bus. (That's the DNSSEC technology). Meanwhile, the parents -- advised by their lawyers -- get the brilliant idea that the "baby on board" thing isn't safe enough, so they push for a law requiring any vehicle carrying children to be painted yellow, "for teh children". (That's SOPA.) So now it's illegal for parents to drive their children anywhere unless they paint their cars yellow, but they'd just set up a system that blows up any car that's painted yellow. That's the clusterfark.
 
2012-01-12 12:28:30 PM

Voiceofreason01: LandStander: Could someone put this in more moran friendly language?

from the third farking sentence: "...Comcast has just made itself unable to comply with key provisions of the very law it is actively championing."

/the whole article is only 100 words long
//jesus you're lazy


There's a comment beneath the article the summarizes this nicely...

"Actually it's even better than that.

Not are they not able to enforce SOPA, but the technology they are implementing is actually in contravention of the act as it stands. To all intents and purposes SOPA will outlaw DNSSEC.

A brief explanation:

DNSSEC is a means of preventing hacked or rogue DNS servers (the machines that turn domain names like theverge.com into IP addresses) from serving up faked results, so someone can't hack a server and pretend to be Google.com, or theverge.com or your bank.

SOPA will require ISPs to block DNS results for blocked sites. DNSSEC, when fully implemented, will do an end run around this restriction due to the way it works. It will automatically circumvent the SOPA blocks.

SOPA makes it illegal to supply, provide or develop technology, tools or services for the purposes of circumvented SOPA blocks.

So, having implemented DNSSEC, Comcast are providing a service that would be illegal under SOPA.

Even more ironic is that some of the biggest supporters of DNSSEC are the DoD, NSA and various other branches of government whose job it is to help secure the USA's infrastructure. The same goes for Tor, which is used to get around China's great firewall, and which is supported by the US government.

SOPA is an absolute clusterfsck, and demonstrates the utter hipocracy of the US political system."


The point of TFA was to show that even the corporations that support SOPA cannot become SOPA complaint. Comcast has admitted as much.

There is a strong opposition movement to SOPA at my university. Even many of the faculty believe that this legislation is extremely damaging to the internet as we know it. For example, under SOPA if any one of us posts copyrighted material on FARK, then the entire site could be shut down, and the site's owner (Drew) could be held legally liable. Post a picture with Mickey Mouse on it, and Disney could shut down the entire site, and the owner could be fined, or imprisoned for up to 5 years. I wonder how Drew feels about this?

I've contacted my state's congresspersons and representatives to tell them how harmful I believe this piece of legislation could be. You should do the same.

/My first green.
//Sweet.
 
2012-01-12 12:28:52 PM
They'll be granfathered in once the bill passes and they will be the only ISP which can advertise "SOPA free" services. This will drive almost all business to them creating a monopoly sanctioned by the Federal Government. This will allow much easier monitoring.
 
2012-01-12 12:30:27 PM

Weaver95: Nemo's Brother: If SOPA passes, fine Comcast heavily for every day they are not compliant. Fine GoDaddy and all of them as well.

here in this country we do not hold corporations responsible for compliance with the law. that would socialism! no, we allow them to write an apology and then go about their bidness.

this country only punishes the little people. preferable harshly. because that's what jesus would have wanted.


/threadjack on

How do you find the new Star Wars MMO? Is it more challenging than WoW? I have been considering getting into another MMO and have found most of them to be of the brainlessly easy variety. Irritating.
 
2012-01-12 12:32:40 PM

Zafler: Weaver95: Nemo's Brother: If SOPA passes, fine Comcast heavily for every day they are not compliant. Fine GoDaddy and all of them as well.

here in this country we do not hold corporations responsible for compliance with the law. that would socialism! no, we allow them to write an apology and then go about their bidness.

this country only punishes the little people. preferable harshly. because that's what jesus would have wanted.

/threadjack on

How do you find the new Star Wars MMO? Is it more challenging than WoW? I have been considering getting into another MMO and have found most of them to be of the brainlessly easy variety. Irritating.




You couldn't just post in one of the 5 million TOR threads? Irritating.
 
2012-01-12 12:33:34 PM
Why'd that post twice?

/Oh well.
 
2012-01-12 12:34:20 PM

randroid: You couldn't just post in one of the 5 million TOR threads? Irritating.


Haven't seen them since I decided to look into getting back into MMO gaming on Saturday. Weav played WoW for quite awhile, so it gives me a baseline comparison for whether I want to drop all that cash on the game.
 
2012-01-12 12:35:13 PM
Had a cable guy out some time ago, for deminished signal. He poked around and did a lot of work. Said that our splice device that they installed and can't be changed is the worst one ever used. Stated that it is already adjusted as far as possible. He than told me some stuff was coming that will really play with the system. I asked if the system causes the splice to fail how will they replace it. Oh, don't worry is all he said. Left feeling like some bull is heading right for me. They break it they fix it. Sounds like the engineers waited too long to really update stuff that the bosses already promised.

/either way they'll pass the cost unto us
 
2012-01-12 12:36:05 PM
So what happens when everyone routes their traffic through VPN servers outside the US?
 
2012-01-12 12:36:08 PM
This is generally hilarious and I'm happy to hear Comcast implemented DNSSEC.
 
2012-01-12 12:36:29 PM

coco ebert: I haven't been following this SOPA stuff. Can one of you nerds link to something that gives a good overview?

/I keed, you know I loves ya.


Is SOPA a good idea?

No.

/that's your overview. Now call your congressional office.
 
2012-01-12 12:36:44 PM

Molavian: clovis69: Lawyers, marketing people and educators are the most clueless people on the planet when it comes to technology.

God, don't get me started on marketing people. Explain shiat to them 10 times and they won't understand it the 11th, either.


Marketers - first you need to sell them on why they need to know it, then you need to tell them, and end by telling them what you told them.

I'm a teacher and a techie. Go figure. Other teachers, though.. yeah, you're right.
 
2012-01-12 12:36:45 PM

mcreadyblue: So what happens when everyone routes their traffic through VPN servers outside the US?


the corporations get the government to make that illegal as well.
 
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