1993: When Domain Names Were Free
by John F. Byers

Langly has an irritating habit of pronouncing "fuck" as "eff-sick". It's "What the eff-sick are you doing to my laptop?" or "I gotta re-boot your eff-sickin' box for the third time."

Today, it's "Eff-sick! Someone's already registered fsck dot com!"

Frohike once argued with him for twenty minutes that "fsck" is pronounced "fisk", and that "fuck" is pronounced "Ringo". Me, I just say I'm running a file system check or use the euphemism "fudge".

Anyway, so Langly says "Eff-sick! Someone's already registered fsck dot com!"

And I reply "You're supposed to be registering LoneGunmen dot com, dot net, and dot org."

He glares at me, then continues accessing what I assume is the NSI InterNIC registry.

Twenty-four hours later, I type LoneGunmen dot com, LoneGunmen dot net, and LoneGunmen dot org into my HTTP reader, Erwise. Each query successfully retrieves the "Hello world" default file I had uploaded earlier to our name server. We are now officially on the World Wide Web!

On a hunch, I test our name with the top-level domain extensions that are restricted to government registrants: .gov, .edu, .arpa, and .mil.

Predictably, each query yields the same result: a plaintext file whose only content is "Fsck You."