Debunking Five Nights In Pyongyang – East Asia Tribune

IP ADDRESS AND WEB HOST

Now let’s check their hosting. A quick ping of their domain reveals their current IP address;

   -----
    admin:~ admin$ ping www.eastasiatribune.com
    PING eastasiatribune.com (162.254.252.110): 56 data bytes
    64 bytes from 162.254.252.110: icmp_seq=0 ttl=43 time=260.662 ms
    64 bytes from 162.254.252.110: icmp_seq=1 ttl=43 time=237.314 ms
    64 bytes from 162.254.252.110: icmp_seq=2 ttl=43 time=258.832 ms
    64 bytes from 162.254.252.110: icmp_seq=3 ttl=43 time=259.325 ms
    ^C
    --- eastasiatribune.com ping statistics ---
    4 packets transmitted, 4 packets received, 0.0% packet loss
    round-trip min/avg/max/stddev = 237.314/254.033/260.662/9.676 ms
    -----

A quick look under the hood reveals their site is running on WordPress which is fine by me (Note: CNN and NY Times are also on WordPress but on VIP WordPress). East Asia Tribune’s servers were slow to respond and at times didn’t respond at all, which rules out VIP hosting. And in checking their IP address, I was able to get the following information about their web host;

   -----
    NetRange: 162.254.248.0 - 162.254.255.255
    CIDR: 162.254.248.0/21
    NetName: INTERNET-BLK-A2HOS-7
    NetHandle: NET-162-254-248-0-1
    Parent: NET162 (NET-162-0-0-0-0)
    NetType: Direct Allocation
    OriginAS: AS55293
    Organization: A2 Hosting, Inc. (A2HOS)
    RegDate: 2014-05-06
    Updated: 2014-06-05
    Ref: https://whois.arin.net/rest/net/NET-162-254-248-0-1

    OrgName: A2 Hosting, Inc.
    OrgId: A2HOS
    Address: P.O. Box 2998
    City: Ann Arbor
    StateProv: MI
    PostalCode: 48106
    Country: US
    RegDate: 2004-03-16
    Updated: 2013-03-13
    Comment: http://www.a2hosting.com
    Ref: https://whois.arin.net/rest/org/A2HOS

    OrgAbuseHandle: NETWO5169-ARIN
    OrgAbuseName: Network Operations
    OrgAbusePhone: +1-734-222-4678 
    OrgAbuseEmail: 
    OrgAbuseRef: https://whois.arin.net/rest/poc/NETWO5169-ARIN

    OrgTechHandle: CUNDI1-ARIN
    OrgTechName: Cundiff, David 
    OrgTechPhone: +1-734-222-4678 
    OrgTechEmail: 
    OrgTechRef: https://whois.arin.net/rest/poc/CUNDI1-ARIN

    OrgNOCHandle: CUNDI1-ARIN
    OrgNOCName: Cundiff, David 
    OrgNOCPhone: +1-734-222-4678 
    OrgNOCEmail: 
    OrgNOCRef: https://whois.arin.net/rest/poc/CUNDI1-ARIN

    RTechHandle: CUNDI1-ARIN
    RTechName: Cundiff, David 
    RTechPhone: +1-734-222-4678 
    RTechEmail: 
    RTechRef: https://whois.arin.net/rest/poc/CUNDI1-ARIN
    -----

See http://whois.domaintools.com/162.254.252.110

From what I see on the whois of their IP address, this website is hosted in the United States through a company called A2 Hosting. The hosting company seems legit and has some track record to speak for itself. But I’ve no experience hosting any of my websites with them so I wouldn’t have a first-hand account of how well they are as web hosts.

I also don’t think an established news organization based in Shanghai would run their website from the United States on what could be a single virtual server or worse, shared hosting. Plus, a news outfit that had been operating since 1972 (as they’ve claimed in their about page) would’ve gone through what other publications have gone through from the onset of the WWW-era to present and must’ve already gone online for some time now.

Running a serious online publication with a reputation that spans decades is challenging. You need redundant server resources that can handle loads of traffic. Linking with a reputable CDN (Content Delivery Network) is a must have.

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