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ICANN, the key overseer of the internet is reanalysing a proposal to create a .xxx top level domain that would clearly demarcate pornographic sites from the rest. While the use of the proposed domain would remain voluntary, any site abiding by this new nomenclature will be subjected to a new set of terms set forth recently (last Friday) by ICANN.

With this new domain ICANN hopes to be able to enforce stricter policing of sites and thus prohibit child pornography. This proposal had been reviewed and rejected last May but seems like this time ICANN is pretty much decided on implementing it despite strong opposition from various conservative groups as well as certain pornographic websites.

As of now the proposal is open for public appraisal and no specific time frame of implementation has been announced.

The new proposal does not directly address any potential conflicts in laws, but it calls for the company backing it, ICM Registry Inc. of Jupiter, Fla., to hire independent organizations to monitor porn sites’ compliance with the new rules.

If approved, ICM would be required to help develop mechanisms for promoting child safety and preventing child pornography, “including practices that appeal to pedophiles or suggest the presence of child pornography on the site.”

Porn sites would have to participate in a self-descriptive labeling system, likely one from the Internet Content Rating Association. Under it, Web sites add tags based on such criteria as the presence of nudity and whether it is in an artistic or educational context, such as for sites on breast feeding. Relatively few sites now participate, although major Web browsers have mechanisms for reading the tags.

ICM also would have to develop automated tools to check for compliance and give users ways to report violations.

Source: BusinessWeek

According to ICM Registry, the benefits of the domain will be …

  • For willing adult consumers of adult entertainment, the Best Business Practices incorporated into the .xxx registration agreement will bring a greater degree of confidence and certainty to their online experience.
  • For adult entertainment providers, identifying themselves as compliant with a comprehensive set of Best Business Practices is expected to provide more predictable revenue streams, greater customer retention and fewer complaints as regulators and others will see adult entertainment providers take a proactive and responsible approach to their web presence.
  • For individuals or families wishing to avoid adult content, the machine- readable labels will allow easy and reliable filtering.
  • In addition, the introduction of .xxx creates a credible, self-regulated forum for all stakeholders to discuss and actively respond to concerns about online adult entertainment.

What are your views on this ?

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2 Comments

  1. Stroke King

     

    Look, I may be biased – and admittedly so. But I believe that restricting ANY type of content to any sort of domain goes down the slippery slope of snuffing out free speech.

    The problem is (and has been) the irresponsible adult webmasters that have insisted on registering misleading domains and spamming children’s blogs with their content. Do you believe that they’re going to conform to the .xxx only regulations?

    And this can lead down a road to an ISP filtering ALL .xxx domains and restricting what you view – as a consenting adult that wants to view legal content.

    Remember – most responsible websites have been labelling their content for years to allow parents to make choices.

    Tough debate overall.

  2. John Jewel

     

    This past February the FCC of this nation completed it’s task of converting all analog broadcast signals to digital. Once this was accomplished it created space in the broadband spectrum called White Area. It is this white area which is being focused upon to set aside
    broad band that would be filtered, that being xxx porn. Although I am not in favor of any government trying to control any media, including porn video streaming on the wireless broadband (3GP/4GP) platforms. The general public feels this will reduce porn. It will not. The most thorough filtering process to date is ones personal morals and second, parental control features which are amply available for free. The action to dictate bandwidth due to it’s content is inconsistent with country’s Bill of Rights. We have all had that issue beaten to death right? The FCC has a a firm plan on implementing filtering and it just wont be xxx porn on the wireless internet.

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