Skip to main content

Pornography Gets Its Own Top-Level Domain

Friday the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) said that pornography will now have its own top-level domain (TLD) called dot-XXX. The decision came after a six-year-long push by ICM Registry to move all adult entertainment into one realm. ICM Registry, which initially proposed the dot-XXX domain all those years ago, claims it's not associated--currently or historically--with the adult entertainment industry.

The new domain was proposed under ICANN's rules for "sponsored" TLDs. Typically these are domains created by interest groups such as the cooperative movement (dot-coop) and the aeronautical industry (dot-aero). However ICANN board member Rita Rodin Johnston isn't convinced that there's a real sponsored community for supporting the proposed pornography domain. Still, she voted in favor of dot-XXX anyway.

"It really doesn't matter what I think," she said in the board-meeting debate for fore the votes were cast. "What's important is that ICANN has a process that it set up and the process came back and said that sponsorship criterion was met, and that this board has the courage to follow that criterion."

Although the new dox-XXX domain has received a green light (or red light in this case), it may be a while before websites can take advantage of the new realm. First the ICANN must review ICM Registry's business plan for the domain. The board must then review the contract proposal for the operation of the domain.

"There is a potential that this is a prolonged process," said board member Bruce Tonkin.

Is moving pornography over to the dot-XXX domain a smart idea? It seems that adult entertainment could be easier to find when housed under one roof. Then again, it may also be easier to block said content by merely adding the new domain to Internet filters.

  • formin
    .... so they're planning to forcing over 3 billion websites to change their name?
    .... good luck!!!!
    Reply
  • TomD_1
    formin.... so they're planning to forcing over 3 billion websites to change their name?.... good luck!!!!
    Agreed, I assume it wont be as simple as changing .com to .xxx
    Reply
  • zaznet
    It's not about forcing domain owners to switch. It is about providing a TLD that indicates the content at the site would more likely be adult oriented. The .org TLD is for organizations and non-profits but there are plenty of retail establishments that use them as their primary domain. It would be possible to put up a child-friendly cartoon site using .xxx if you so chose.

    If you run an adult oriented site that wants customers to know they are going to an adult site before following a link or typing a URL then this TLD is of interest to you. It is less likely that giving up a .com or .net TLD you've used for over a year is of interest to you though but a site can use more than one TLD or hostname.
    Reply
  • I think the biggest hurdle this TLD will have is getting any existing sites to move over to it (not that they have to.) Other than having a ton of new domain names available, what incentive is there for a well established site to change it's domain name?

    Not that I don't like that they've finally created this TLD, this should have been put in place a long time ago.
    Reply
  • bison88
    This would only really work if they forced all pornographic material websites over to the XXX domain and then you'd run into a problem of those random sites and forums that tend to have pornographic images or two appear having to be forced over yada yada yada. Without forcing them its just another Top Level Domain. If I can register one when the time comes then it is doing exactly the opposite of its job.
    Reply
  • This is great news for parents and users looking to control content on their computers. It's about time this happened.
    Reply
  • flamethrower205
    More importantly, who's the girl in the picture? :)
    Reply
  • hellwig
    zaznetIf you run an adult oriented site that wants customers to know they are going to an adult site before following a link or typing a URL then this TLD is of interest to you.Yeah, because "hotmale-dot-com", "georgiasbush-dot-net", and "bootyhunter-dot-org" aren't obvious enough, but "123buycheapdrugsnow-dot-xxx", wow, I bet I can find naked ladies there!
    zaznet It is less likely that giving up a .com or .net TLD you've used for over a year is of interest to you though but a site can use more than one TLD or hostname.Yeah, cause Playboy wants to buy yet ANOTHER domain to keep squatters at bay. This was probably just a gigantic ploy by ICM to make a nice payday for themselves. "Yeah, we'll create .xxx, then we'll charge $1000/year. Then, big pron companies will have to buy out domains to keep squatters away!"

    If a website wants to be on .xxx, let it. But domains in general are bad. They dilute the internet. Ever been to .com, only to have to google the company and find out they're at .net? Yeah, we REALLY need more TLDs, especially when the big ones are already 90% porn in the first place.
    Reply
  • thejerk
    i'm a fan of porn. but, yes, move it all to one domain. it'll be easier to block websites at the workplace and from my son. and, if anyone complains about not being able to view pornography at work, they should have the it's-not-nice-to-rub-one-out-in-the-office-someone-else-needs-that-chair, too talk.
    Reply
  • zaznet
    @hellwig

    Oh I agree 100% that the existing domain space is polluted and miss-used. I also agree that this is a tactic to make money for one company. Not sure what premium they will charge to administer the TLD but it should remain in line with other primary TLDs like .com and .net if the company hopes to see enough takers to make .xxx remotely useful.
    Reply