Sometimes the Internet can be frustratingly vague. These days you can find just about anything you want to find somewhere on the Internet, but it can be far more difficult to find where that thing may have come from. For example, many students doing research-related papers simply start by searching for their topics in Google. This almost always returns a plethora of results; the trouble is in finding out which of these results actually come from reliable sources. This is just one example of how the Internet can be frustrating and at times unreliable; the same can be true in business, or even just in casual usage of the Internet. It just isn’t always readily apparent where Internet pages originate, or who might be behind them.
This is why Network Solutions has brought us the WHOIS domain search, which essentially allows you to look beneath a website and find some information about who is running it, or at least who started it or who it belongs to. Essentially, once someone buys and/or submits a domain name, he or she is usually required to provide personal contact information to a sort of Internet listing. This information is what the WHOIS search tool allows you to locate. This means that if you have questions about the content of a website, about when it was last updated, or even about when the domain name was registered – basically, if there is anything you are curious about at all – you can simply look up the domain name and find out “who is” behind it, so long as it is properly registered, etc.
Of course, such a system requires certain privacy options in order to protect those who register domain names but don’t wish for their contact information to be so readily available on the Internet. Some domain registrars, such as Network Solutions, offer private listings for an additional fee; what this will essentially do for you, if you are registering a domain name, is switch the contact information so that anyone looking up your domain in WHOIS will find Network Solutions’ information rather than your own. So, ultimately, if registering a domain name, it is possible to be more private. There are also options, however, of basically being less private, if for example you wish to put yourself out there even more. Network Solutions offers small businesses the chance to basically advertise themselves through WHOIS. In the end, WHOIS is simply a tool that makes domain names more personal, both to you and to anyone curious about your domain.