For me, this is a great tradeoff. For example, I'm happy to put my pictures on Facebook because my family and friends see those pictures and leave comments that I enjoy. In comparison, my local copies feel like those dusty old photo albums in my parents' basement that nobody ever opens.
Still, the people who are converting everything over to Google+ aren't crazy (well, they are a little bit, no search and no RSS is kinda a big deal). The design of G+, particularly the permalink pages, does a good job of making the first thing you see the actual content, not the fact that it is on G+.
Use your own domain name.
Turn marco.tumblr.com into www.marco.org"
Most people agree that there is a balance between the rights of individuals to do what they want, and the rights of the government to stop them if society benefits. For example, almost everyone agrees that the police shouldn't have unlimited power to search anyone they want. But almost no one argues that they should have no power to search people - just that a balance needs to be struck.
Besides, you got the part about rights of individuals wrong. The right to do what you want doesn't stop where the government thinks it should. It's where you start infringing on another individuals right to what he or she wants.
See, that's where you lose me. If you take a moderate position, like "the benefits of keeping domains free outweigh the benefits of domain seizures", you might have a point.
But saying "there is no benefit for anyone" [emphasis mine] is clearly, demonstrably false. If a website contains instructions on making bombs, there is some benefit in taking it down. If a website contains lists of hitmen for hire, there is some benefit in taking it down. Even if the website only contains copyrighted material, there is some benefit to someone (the copyright holders) in taking it down.
You can stick to your "censorship is always always always evil" stance, but you'll likely find few people willing to seriously consider it.
But shouldn't it be called bitname?
The only reason I don't own my identity online is that I've been too cheap to pay for domain registration. And that's an ever less meaningful excuse.
The only identity that you can really own is an asymmetric encryption key, but it won't allow people to find you.
additionally, ive always worried about the fact that the dns registar generally own your dns and just let you use it for a fee.
well then again, dns depends also on static ips which we dont really own. with ipv6 we can be one step closer to owning the ip without being an isp however. can also setup rdns more easily.
Not really, there's dynamic DNS. My home connection has a dynamic (well, semi-static) IP, so I use a dynamic DNS provider and a small monitoring utility to auto-update the IP when it changes.
Even blah.com depends on com and com depends on . (aka dot)
DNS being hierarchical, you never actually own the thing =/
There are decentralized DNS attempts tho
People like this are powerful contributors to the network effect favourable to proprietary services like Twitter and Facebook. I know that true freedom is not easy (Postfix configuration through SSH is not for my mom). But one can at least use proprietary providers of open protocols.
The project is getting started. It's bold and far-reaching, but so was a free encyclopedia anyone could edit. This page http://wiki.debian.org/FreedomBox gives more background and the videos it links to are inspirational.
If you agree with owning your identity, you may like what you read.
Hotmail addresses are indeed notorious for their lack of permanence. Last time I checked, if you do not log in for 270 days, your account is deleted, and your username is up for grabs.  If somebody else were to come along and take your username, they could easily gain access to your passwords that can be restored restored via e-mail, as well as your whole online identity.
+ Your contacts are easily exportable
- Non-webmail access: exchange-push protocol for smart phones, POP3 (aka Inbox-only), Outlook/OutlookExpress-only access (using, I presume, private APIs).
- If you decide to move your identity off of hotmail, you can't disable spam filtering, which combined with basically POP3-only access means you are forced to login to check you spam folder. At least with Gmail/GoogleApps you can use IMAP to automatically check/sync your spam folder, even though you can't turn off the filtering. The only plus here is that you can dial down the spam filter slightly, which you can't do on Google.
- Since access is POP3 only, the only way to export all of your email is to move all of it into your Inbox and pull it down (or alternate between moving a folder in and pulling it down, then sorting it on the other end back into folders).
There are three (or 4) areas of action links on the page, to ensure that I never remember where the print button or Reply all button is.
It regularly junks emails from lists I'm subscribed to, apparently hitting "not junk" is not enough to mark it safe for next time?
The login page has a session that can expire - if I haven't logged in within five minutes of opening the login page, I get thrown backwards again for session expiration. Sometimes I consider not bothering attempting to re-log in.
Perhaps I've just been spoilt by Gmail.
I hope you're joking. Live Mail (which subsumed Hotmail) is atrocious, the interface sucks. Live Mail also doesn't do a good job of catching spam.
The only thing worse I've used interface-wise is Yahoo! Mail.
To give credit where it's due, the spam filtering has improved dramatically. I've used my hotmail account as a utility email account for at least ten years. I get several hundred spams a week. They are close to 100% in filtering accuracy for me but YMMV. The only problems I've had is that spammy things I've signed up for can be filtered the first time in.
This makes it not viable as a blogging platform for me.
For e.g. Wordpress to import Tumblr blogs they need to write an importer just for Tumblr's format, whereas if Tumblr used a standard like RSS, WP could use a generalist importer.
Don't underestimate the value of standard formats; the transport mechanism (XML/JSON/HTML) is a small detail.
It would require non-trivial work to scrape the pages to get the html, set up parsing to handle different types of content, get into a format that could be imported into something else, etc. Not something I'm willing to spend my time setting up, and what about all the people who might want to export their tumblr content but can't program.
This of course is a lot different for say a company that has worked very hard building up something like a Facebook following that while susceptible to marketing messages aren't likely to go out of their way to follow the company to whatever online presences they create.