ICANN on verge of approving .XXX domain

25 Jun 2010107 Views

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The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbering is planning to approve the .xxx top level domain for adult websites – a decade after it was first proposed.

The move could make it possible to separate porn from mainstream web sites.

At a public meeting in Brussels yesterday, ICANN general counsel John Jeffrey indicated that the controversial .xxx domain would likely be approved today.

The decision is being met with opposition from members of the adult industry and the North American religious right.

If ICANN doesn’t move soon on the decision, it could be the target of litigation by ICM Registry, a company that intends to sell .xxx domains. Approving the new top level domain could help it avoid litigation.

“The .xxx extension will be one of a very small number of sponsored internet extensions and members of the sponsoring community will be able to register domains with the new ending,” ICM said on its site.

“However, while most internet extensions are used for just about everything you can imagine, .xxx will be focused on providing an online home for those members of the adult industry who wish to self-identify and responsibly self-regulate.

“The idea was to create an easily identifiable area of the internet so users know what to expect when they see a .xxx address,” ICM Registry said.

Editor John Kennedy is an award-winning technology journalist.

editorial@siliconrepublic.com