ICANN Now Use .XXX for Pornographic Domains - The UpStream

ICANN Now Use .XXX for Pornographic Domains

posted Sunday Mar 20, 2011 by Nicholas DiMeo

ICANN Now Use .XXX for Pornographic Domains

It wasn't very long ago that ICANN, the Internet Corporation for Assigned Named and Numbers, finally approved the use of any dot extension, like iam.nick or youarenot.awesome. This week they went a step further when they gave .XXX top-level domain status and approval. This was done to give pornographic sites their own clear space as to no longer confuse web users. Of course, this was done after an 11 year debate over the matter and didn't stop there. 9 members of the board voted in favor, 3 opposed and 4 abstained the decision.

The .XXX domain was proposed back in 2000 and again in 2004, but of course had a lot of people opposing the entire idea. After the proposal was approved in 2005, we had the Family Research Council launch an entire campaign that said pornographers would be able to "expand their evil empires on the Internet". It then went on to go back and forth on top-level domain status until June of 2010 and the final vote happened this week.

For more on what this means for the web, hit the break.

So now that we have a designated area for 90% of the Internet, how does one go about getting a registration for a .XXX domain? Great question, young up-and-coming pornographer! You will have to fill out an application process that will be reviewed by the International Foundation for Online Responsibility and your domain will have to be in the adult industry. The ICM Registry will also allow current .com domains to reserve their .XXX domains earlier to let them "protect their brand names and intellectual property rights within .XXX." We will call this the Trojan Rule.

Shockingly, the adult industry and free speech advocates are not happy about this. Free Speech Coalition Executive Director Diane Duke said,

Of course we are disappointed but we are not surprised by the ICANN Board’s decision. As voiced in concerns by speakers at this very conference, the ICANN Board has dangerously undervalued the input from governments worldwide. Worse, they have disregarded overwhelming outpouring of opposition from the adult entertainment industry—the supposed sponsorship community—dismissing the interests of free speech on the Internet.

The FSC (no relation to some random Florida nonsensical affair of copied and mismanaged song and dance) will fight this and review the ICANN procedure to "help the industry fully understand the risks and ramifications of participating in .XXX." We'll keep you posted on what comes up from this.

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