New top level domain approved

Friday, June 3, 2005

The ICANN (Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers) responsible for managing domain names and IP addresses, approved a plan Wednesday to create a new top-level domain (TLD) with the .xxx extension. They are working with the domain registrar, ICM Registry, to make the domains available as early as fall or winter. ICM plans to sell registrations of .xxx domains for $60 a year.

The new TLD was one of ten recently under consideration. .jobs and .Travel have already been approved.

The .xxx domain is intended for use by adult pornographic/erotic web sites. The stated reason a new TLD has been approved is to protect children from pornographic sites; a filter could simply block all .xxx pages.

The ICANN, established by the U.S. Department of Commerce in 1998, is a non-profit corporation responsible for the technical coordination of the Internet through the assignment of domain names and IP addresses.

The American Civil Liberties Union opposes the proposal since topics like homosexuality or birth control could be forced to use the domain, making them easily blockable by filters.

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