These types of sites will be disabled without notice or warning upon discovery:
- IRC proxies or bots (public or private)
- public HTTP (web) proxies
- public BitTorrent trackers
These types of sites will be shut down without notice or warning the first time an unresolved issue is brought to our attention:
- public URL shorteners
- sites that allow anonymous, unregistered, unmoderated content posting (e.g., "chan" sites)
- IRC bots, proxies, and BitTorrent trackers
These sites will be abused within minutes of discovery, and discovery is pretty much automated. It saves time to say "no" up front rather than wait and shut it down after a problem.
There aren't any circumstances where an IRC proxy or bot is allowable, and you will find most common IRC ports firewalled on our network.
If you need to set up a private web proxy on your site for your personal use that is appropriately access-limited, that is no problem as long as your use complies with our Terms & Conditions of Service. (This does not include using our SSH server as a Socks or HTTP proxy. Doing so is strictly prohibited.)
- URL shorteners
URL shorteners are, unfortunately, a lot more fun to write than they are to maintain. If you want to set up a URL shortener for your personal use, that's fine. If you let the general public submit URLs to it, expect us to shut it down the first time it gets exploited. (And it will get exploited.)
Properly run URL shorteners aren't successful because they have the shortest or cleverest URL; they're successful because they have a team of people working 24x365, proactively and reactively, to prevent and mitigate abuse. If you have such a team and want to run a public URL shortener on our service, please contact us for special arrangements. If you don't have such a team, you'll have to find another host that's less concerned about the Internet's welfare.
- "Unmoderated" sites
You are responsible for your site's content. If you allow the Internet public to post content to your site, that's on you. If someone posts content to your site that violates our Terms & Conditions of Service, you have violated our Terms & Conditions of Service. You are the person we will hold accountable.
Sites typically avoid this through steps like verified user registration, holding some or all posts for approval, automated content scanning (e.g., PhotoDNA), and human moderators.
Like URL shorteners, successful sites that eschew one or more of those precautions are successful because they have an aggressive moderation team large enough to provide 24x365 coverage. Like with URL shorteners, if you have such a team and want to run this type of site, please contact us for special arrangements. If you want to run such a site without adequate moderation, you'll need to do so elsewhere.
These policies don't mean you can't run sites that get any complaints or are ever abused by others. They mean that we are not your content moderators. If you run this type of site and we get a complaint about prohibited content on your site, we want to see that you have already taken care of it by the time we investigate.