Search terms “Jailbait chan” and “Jailbait imageboards” used
Last week, the imageboard site 8chan.co was brought offline for a sustained period of over five days due to a prolonged DDoS attack. On Monday, it returned only to go back offline for a much different reason: its domain had been seized.
Site founder Fredrick Brennan posted an e-mail on Monday that he says came from the site’s Bahamas-based registrar, Internet.bs. The note explained that the domain 8chan.co had been put “on hold” due to “child abuse” content appearing on the site.
This followed a swell of complaint e-mails sent over the weekend to Cloudflare, the “pass-through” content delivery network that had been operating 8chan’s servers. Some users were upset over content posted on 8chan by its imageboard users and directed their complaints to Cloudflare. “Please take appropriate measures to stop your customer from abusing your services and enabling illegal content,” one complainant wrote after posting links to 11 8chan boards that contained underage “girls and boys shown in sexual poses.”
In accordance to Cloudflare’s abuse-report policy, the company responded to complaints by forwarding them back to 8chan’s administrative address—essentially telling an alleged offender who blew a whistle and how they did so. Brennan responded to those complaints by reposting them, complete with the complainants’ full names and e-mail addresses for 8chan and Twitter users to see.
As a result, the complainant quoted above, who used his real name and e-mail address when writing to Cloudflare, was subsequently “doxxed” by imageboard users, and his personal and private contact details were posted on 8chan-friendly boards.
As for the domain, it continues to be parked at “parkingcrew.net”.
Brennan stated that he has been unable to reclaim or transfer 8chan.co for the time being. He used his Twitter account to point out how the site currently redirected, for some users, to a splash site hosted by Internet.bs that contained apparently auto-generated search terms such as “Jailbait chan” and “Jailbait imageboards.” Those seemed to run contrary to the complaining reason for the takedown.
Additionally, Brennan said Internet.bs hadn’t pointed to any specific child-abuse content in its takedown notice. (Worth noting, this isn’t the first time Internet.bs has been scrutinized over how it reacted to user complaints.)
Just before Monday’s domain seizure, 8chan had come back online in a variety of limited and full flavors. Site founder Fredrick Brennan cobbled together alternate server options along with new imageboard links hosted by the site’s Japanese sibling 2ch.net. It was at some of these new locales that the whistleblowers’ doxxing occurred.
Savvy users can still find those and other operational 8chan boards by typing an IP address directly. Our last report about 8chan’s DDoS-related outage detailed many of the enemies and detractors the site had accumulated since launching in 2013 as a less-regulated version of similar imageboard site 4chan.