El Gato was giddy when he read that the Federal Trade Commission had shut down Electronic Domain Name Monitoring. The Katt warned readers in his Nov. 13 column about the bogus company.
At the time, EDNM was faxing Webmasters false information that a third party was trying to register their companies names with another top-level domain, like .net or .org. After the scare tactics, EDNM offered to arbitrate on the trademark holders behalf and register the alternative domain name for a $70 fee.
The Kitty contacted a rep from Network Solutions, who at the time told the Furry One that EDNMs Toronto and Atlanta offices would not return calls. Currently, the Feds estimate that about 27,000 domain name holders fell for the scam before Uncle Sam froze the faux-faxing felons funds and filed suit against the company. “Thats 27,000 folks who should have been reading Rumor Central,” rued the Lynx.
The Furball figured there was more there than meets the eye when Linux software seller SuSE announced it was laying off two-thirds of its U.S. staff. SuSEs headquarters in Germany was under pressure to shore up its service offering in North America to justify its U.S. subsidiary. His Hirsuteness got the 411, from a source close to the company, that SuSE entered into negotiations last year to acquire Linuxcare. A dominant player in the United States, Linuxcare specializes in technical support and services across all Linux distributions.
According to the Furry Ones friend, SuSE couldnt find sufficient value to justify the purchase price Linuxcare was demanding, so the deal was scrapped. The tattler told Spencer that the outcome of the deal set the tone for SuSEs German executives to rethink the companys U.S. presence and resulted in the recent decision to cut its support staff and route customers wanting technical support to Germany.
TurboLinux is now reportedly negotiating to buy Linuxcare, even though both companies announced layoffs earlier this month. “Gee, I wonder if every time a Linux company takes a hit, an engineer in Redmond gets his wings?” mused the muddled Mouser.
Speaking of Redmond, a Katt crony told the Kitty that someone hacked into the DNS servers that direct traffic to Microsoft.com last week and changed all the domain registration records. Now, when you do a search to see who owns Microsoft.com, there is a list of 46 anti-Redmond messages accompanying the correct domain name information. The messages consist of such prose as: MICROSOFT.COM. IS.SO.VERY. SKANKY.NET. A Microsoft rep said the company is aware of the problem and said the vandalism has nothing to do with the sites security.
With all the troubles facing Napster, Spencer wondered if the months of development reportedly spent on the Napigator2 program will have been worth the effort. The original Napigator found popularity with college students on campuses that block the use of Napster. Napigator allows users to view Nap servers on various networks. A young hooligan tells the Katt that the new Napigator interface embeds itself into the existing Napster interface. “If Napster does charge a fee,” pondered the Puss, “will kids even care about running a campus camouflage program, or will they just check out the P2P options instead?”