More Domain Drama with 4As and .XXX

The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers’ (ICANN) decision to approve the creation of generic top-level domain (TLD) names has been rife with controversy, but recent opposition from the American Association of Advertising Agencies (4As) and the adult entertainment industry has reignited the debate. The first statement came from the Free Speech Coalition (FSC), a trade association of the adult entertainment industry, advocating adult trademark holders to attempt to protect their brands from being sold on .XXX domains to third parties. The concern of the group is that the expansion of the .XXX domain extension is going to blackball all sites using it on the Internet, and could ultimately hurt the image of the industry in the long-run. These fears have been somewhat validated by the release of information that only about 20 percent of businesses registering for the…

Senate Votes on Domain Seizure Law

The U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee, led by Vermont Senator Pat Leahy, today unanimously approved legislation that would provide the U.S. Justice Department with enhanced powers to block domain names and third-party enablers (including internet service providers, payment processors and online ad networks) of web sites that it believes are dedicated to the piracy of intellectual property. Under the bill, according to Howard Neu, the company that sold the domain name registration to the website could even be forced to revoke the domain name of the site if it is being used for copyright infringement or counterfeiting. Free speech issues aside, the development should force domainers (and perhaps even affiliate marketers) to be very concerned. According to Broadband Breakfast, the movie industry association and labor groups hailed the Judiciary Committee’s approval of S.3804, the Combating Online Infringement and Counterfeits Act, while…