Board Votes .xxx Down (9-5) -- Crawford Dissents
Date: Friday March 30 2007, @06:01AM
Topic: gTLDs hoping to enter the legacy root

Other than the obvious answer that both incumbent TLD operators and trademark interests want to prevent the creation of new TLDs, I have never understood why ICANN hasn't set up mechanistic rules for the creation of TLDs. Mechanistic rules -- setting simple qualifications and otherwise getting out of the way -- would take ICANN out of the withering line of fire that its continuing insistence on its semantic omniscience subjects it to.

Another thing I never understood -- except for the obvious explanation that insiders used their power to move it forward -- was why of all the many pending and mooted applications for new TLDs, ICANN found .xxs most worthy for full consideration.

These two choices: first insisting on its power to regulate the content (instead of just the bona fides and technical seriousness) of applicants and second taking up .xxx less slowly than so many other applicants, came home to roost this week. And ICANN voted .xxx down by 9-5.

I have no brief for .xxx -- it would be low on my personal list of useful additions to the root -- but unlike some I make no great claims for deference to my views. I care much more about ICANN's life-long inability to get its procedures right. No, strike that, make it life-long unwillingness to craft neutral procedures at all.

Susan Crawford's thoughtful dissent, Why I Voted For XXX, explains the issues better than I can. I am sure, given ICANN's circle-the-wagons culture that she will be pilloried for it by the staff and others, both to her face and behind her back. Watch for the personal attacks to begin any minute now.

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Read it all
by Kieren McCarthy on Saturday March 31 2007, @03:47PM (#16920)
User #4206 Info
Much as I appreciate and understand Susan Crawford's views, I feel obliged to point out that there was a long discussion that went on about .xxx and it should be the case that the other Board members' positions are given equal weight.

I went to the trouble of breaking up the transcript of the .xxx discussion into who said what, with hyperlinks, and posted it about an hour after the Board meeting ended.

My personal views are all over the Net, but even when I disagree with people's views, I have the courtesy to include them.

How are you ever supposed to get anywhere if you ignore or discount the other views made in public?

As for the Machiavellian claim that Susan will find herself at the end of attacks, find them and raise them, but don't for god's sake state factually that something in the future is going to happen when there isn't the slightest evidence that it will.

Can't we all be a bit more grown-up about this?

The full .xxx discussion can be found at: []

Kieren McCarthy
General manager of public participation, ICANN

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Poster Child For World's Dumbest Domain Idea
by Seth_Finkelstein on Saturday March 31 2007, @04:54PM (#16924)
User #3398 Info |
Michael, I understand the argument for a "free market" TLD process - but why do the advocates of that concept go to the wall over it regarding what is arguably the poster-child for World's Dumbest Domain Idea? It seems so tangled, as in "Yes, we have a restrictive process now, but we shouldn't, but because we want an open process, but within the restrictive process, we should approve the World's Dumbest Domain Idea, which will just happen to make those behind it a boatload of money because the process is restrictive now, but it shouldn't be restrictive ..."

Umm, what? Who benefits? (in many senses of that phrase ...)

And if there's an open process, who gets: .xxx .porn .sex .erotica .adult .pron .p0rn .prn

and so on ...
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