rscott13 - 7:17 pm on Sep 3, 2011 (gmt 0)
jmccormac, the niche search engine is one that checks all websites it can find, attempting to determine the location, so that people can just search for websites near them (e.g. if they are looking for a restaurant to go to, they don't care about ones that are 1,000 miles/km away).
The statistics site has information going beyond what is contained in the TLD zonefiles, such as data on mailserver usage.
And these projects aren't the ones that were overloading GoDaddy's DNS servers (they have been chugging away for several years, with traffic only 15% higher today than a year ago). They did recently claim that some of their DNS servers were under attack, so it is possible that they simply decided to block some legitimate packets in order to deal with the overload from the attack. Of course, they aren't likely to issue a press release saying that they are under attack... and intentionally blocking DNS queries to deal with it.