First off, before I get to anything that’s wrong, there’s a lot that’s right about OpenDNS: It’s a simple, effective and flexible tool for content filtering. As a company, they’re trying to improve the state of DNS for end users with tools like DNSCrypt. You can’t beat their entry-level price – free. Their anycast network is good, especially if you’re on the west coast of the United States, like I am (in fact, it’s better for me than surely-much-larger Google’s 220.127.116.11 and 18.104.22.168). Their dashboard is pretty neat, too.
Second, let’s get the most common complaint about OpenDNS – one that isn’t going to be discussed here any further – out of the way: Their practice of returning ads on blocked or non-existent sites in your browser, via a bogus A RR of 22.214.171.124 (if you don’t go with one of their paid options). OpenDNS is upfront about doing this, so you can decide if the trade-off is worthwhile before you sign up – and you can quit using them any time you want.
Those two preliminaries covered, here’s a case study of what I think is a serious problem with OpenDNS, plus some thoughts on how they could fix it.