One of the world's richest companies, Amazon, is used to efficiently throwing its weight around the internet in a variety of ways.
But a new case of a torrent site stripped of its domain name after a single Amazon complaint shows that even by the giant's standards, it has overshot the mark this time.
To be precise, it was a single complaint that seems to have found a willing collaborator with an agenda of its own in EuroDNS, the domain name registrar for the website, the TheRedBear.cc, TorrentFreak is reporting.
Usually, it takes a great number of copyright infringement complaints filed against a torrent or streaming website before they lose the crucial piece of the puzzle necessary to effectively operate online – their domain name.
The site's owner spoke for TorrentFreak earlier to explain that the way he operates means acting quickly on takedown notices, thus hoping to avoid the ire of copyright holders. But he missed an Amazon complaint, and Amazon went straight to EuroDNS.
Here the story becomes one of the domain name registrar using the opportunity to exercise its own terms of service, that includes the possibility of “reviewing” the account against which it had received infringement or other complaints – and in this specific case, this means “reviewing” the identity of the customer.
The operator of TheRedBear was thus asked for a copy of his passport, and “a real” phone call from his own country, rather than the virtual variety. As he had met these criteria when registering last year, he was unwilling to repeat the steps – resulting in EuroDNS suspending the account, and leaving the domain to likely soon expire.
The company's legal department confirmed in conversation with TorrentFreak that they will not act swiftly to suspend domains on copyright infringement complaints – not unless they also host the site, and not unless it is obviously engaged in things like “phishing and social hatred.”
But claims against a customer coming from third parties do bring about “a swift review of the concerned account to make sure they comply with our Terms and Conditions.”
Meanwhile, it's not known at this time if and when TheRedBear will be given a new opportunity somewhere else on the web, with a new domain name.
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