The Mastodon instance “queer.af” was effectively shut down by the Taliban, which has begun to operate Afghanistan’s “.af” top level domain after years of inactivity.
When the Taliban retook control of Afghanistan in 2021, the fate of these domains and the websites on them became uncertain, and, three years later, another shoe now appears to be dropping. Last month, Erin Shepherd, the administrator of the queer.af Mastodon instance on the Fediverse posted that they have been “in limbo” since the Taliban retook control of the country, and had already planned to shut down in April. The Taliban shut the domain down roughly two months before it was scheduled to renew.
“queer.af has been suspended in the registry and will no longer be included in zone file generation. This means that any services connected with this domain, such as websites or email addresses will cease working shortly,” a message signed by Afghanistan’s Ministry of Communications and IT, which is operated by the Taliban, reads.