back to article ICANN delays decision on pornography domain

ICANN has delayed its ruling on the proposed .xxx internet porn domain until this summer. Today, at its meeting in Nairobi, Kenya, the ICANN board voted to push a decision to its next get-together in Brussels this June, while giving its CEO and chief counsel two weeks to prepare recommendations on how to proceed with the .xxx …


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  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Oh goody, another round of the moral majority

    bemoaning the concept of there being smut on the Interwebs. Despite the fact that there seems to be plenty even without the benefit of a dedicated TLD...

    1. Paul S. Gazo
      Paris Hilton

      You named the group incorrectly.

      They're not the moral majority. Amongst the developed world, they're the hypocritical majority and the moral minority. Most people like porn. Most people like sex. Most people just aren't willing to publicly admit it for fear of being ostracized as perverts.

      Behind closed doors when nobody's looking, the guys proposing strict anti-porn regulation are busy taking a strap-on up the arse from a dominatrix in leather.

      Don't be fooled. It's just about appearances. It's trendy to seem prudish, at least amongst the U.S.

      Paris because at least she wasn't afraid of doing something that felt good.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        What do you expect?

        It's not so much the strict controls, it's the ball gag and gimp mask that bother me when I've been a naughty boy.

        I'd suggest that the net is actually a fairly good indicator of people's true nature.

        Because it's perceived as having an 'unregulated' and 'anonymous' nature, people feel liberated and free to behave in their true(ish) nature far more than they would in 'the real world'.

        Of course, free thought and liberated behaviour is to be discouraged as mere proles cannot possibly contain themselves so we'd all disappear into a Bacchanalian orgy of open relationships and webcam wanking if we allow anyone apart from the privileged classes and newspaper editors, who are famed for their self control, to indulge, hence the pushing of the current trend to be prudish in the media.

        Which actually scares me more than the Moderatrix's new flogger.

        (Can we have a Frazer icon please? We're all doomed)

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Paris Hilton

    What it should do

    Is look at web usage and if porn sites feature highly (I am sure that they will) and if porn site owners want and request an .xxx (I am sure that they will) then under the "anything goes" model that should have what they want - unpleasant as it may seem.

    1. Lee T
      Paris Hilton

      The title is required, and must contain letters and/or digits.

      "and if porn site owners want and request an .xxx (I am sure that they will)"

      They don't

      <- who else.

  3. tomboi1978

    Good idea if taken far enough

    I think a .xxx TLD is a great idea if it's taken to the length it needs to go. Existing "adult entertainment" sites get first shot at registering their current .com/.net/.etc domains as .xxx. But then the site must be hosted from the .xxx, and all other dots must resolve to display a message giving the .xxx address and nothing else. No redirects. No ads for other sites owned by the same company. Then all people have to do to keep porn off their machines is block all .xxx domains. If, as an existing "provider", you don't nab the .xxx when given the shot you lose the ability to resolve the site.

    Tom M.

    P.S. For anyone who's about to scream at me for being a far-right, conservative, christian kook, tell it to my boyfriend when he gets home from his job as an "adult entertainer".

    1. Graham Marsden

      Bad idea if (when) taken too far...

      > all people have to do to keep porn off their machines is block all .xxx domains. If, as an existing "provider", you don't nab the .xxx when given the shot you lose the ability to resolve the site.

      And, once again, I ask what happens to adult businesses like mine which deals in leather bondage gear and, thus, has adult content, but does not deal in "porn"?

      Not forgetting, of course, the massive rush there will be to register or etc, plus the cyber-squatters getting in on the act who will no doubt try to register and sell it to me for a hefty commission because I own the version of it.

      1. The Fuzzy Wotnot


        Naughty boy, fishing for free advertising there? Punishment time for you....

    2. Ken Hagan Gold badge

      Re: Good idea...

      if there was universal agreement on what constitutes porn. There clearly isn't, so there clearly isn't an objective definition of what ought to go into .xxx.

      DNS is not a legal classification system, so it shouldn't be used as one. OTOH, so many people (and governments) seem to want it to become such a thing that perhaps it ought to become one, with non-ccTLDs being deleted (except for one kept around for internationally recognised organisations) and everyone forced to declare what legal jurisdiction their web-site is subject to.

      Back on the first hand, you can imagine how likely *that* proposal is to gain ICANN's approval, so instead let's all just repeat after me: DNS is not a legal classification system, so it shouldn't be used as one.

    3. David S

      Quite so.

      It's almost too obvious. I fail to see what the objection can be!

    4. Jamie Jones Silver badge


      Yes, if they did it like that it would be a good idea.

      But they aren't, so it's just going to be another pointless domain-grab cash waste

  4. Vigilante

    The point is..

    Having the .xxx domain as well as the current ones, and NOT forcing porn site administrators to use it, simply means that there will be twice as many, or more, of the sites currently out there.

    This proposal would only be worthwhile considering if there was also a rule forcing porn domains onto .xx INSTEAD of .com .biz .whatever domains, as then there would simply be " a place" for them, rather than "another place" for them.

    1. Jim Morrow
      Paris Hilton

      Supply and demand

      "Having the .xxx domain as well as the current ones, and NOT forcing porn site administrators to use it, simply means that there will be twice as many, or more, of the sites currently out there.

      no. you really don't have a clue. the number of smut sites won't change (much) if .xxx goes ahead. they'll just have more names. the domain name just gets added alongside pornsite.$tld and they all point to the same web pages/site. there might be a small increase because of the novelty value of the new tld, probably too small to measure.

      there's a finite supply and demand for porn. it's called market forces. that demand and supply isn't going to be influenced significantly by the presence or absence of a porn-specific tld. demand isn't going to double because .xxx is created. so supply isn't going to double either.

      the notion that a new tld will somehow double the number of sites is just stupid. the only way this could be true for .xxx would be if half the world's porn suppliers were prevented from getting on the net because .xxx didn't exist. that's clearly not true. if you ran a porn business, would you be saying "wait! i can't start trading because i can't get"?

      "This proposal would only be worthwhile considering if there was also a rule forcing porn domains onto .xx "

      iiuc the guys behind .xxx say they are the responsible part of the porn business. so the sites under .xxx are supposedly going to have enforcable codes of conduct about using willing participants, nothing involving minors, etc. if this is correct, then there is some merit in .xxx. unlike the zillions of ideas that are being suggested for new tlds.

  5. Craig 28

    Why object?

    Are they afraid that having a top level domain will legitimise porn? Frankly my view is that having a .xxx domain makes parental control easier, not all sites will use .xxx but then not all porn on TV is on the playboy channel. It allows you to safely cordon off a subset of the internet if you so wish, without fear of blocking anything harmless.

    Or to put it another way:

    Banning under-18s from sex shops won't stop them giggling over the sunday sport in their local newsagent, but at least they won't be able to off with the latest issue of "knockers knackers and smackers" or whatever the hell they sell. It will make things that much more difficult, and you can't prevent a determined teen boy from finding porn (trust me), you can only make it not as worth the effort in the hope they'll get bored and go drool over the latest Tomb Raider game instead.

    1. dogged

      Why not

      just get it from railway sidings like everyone else?

    2. pedrodude

      Why object? Because it's a stupid idea, that's why.

      I don't think anyone's saying it will legitimise porn, as it's legitimate already... It will only make parental control easier for those websites that voluntarily migrate their presence to the new TLD. There will be nothing to stop them from maintaining their presence on other TLDs, unless you regulate them... and THAT'S where the issue is. Soon everyone will be arguing about what is sexually explicit and what isn't and politicians will make unnecessary and unenforceable laws based on subjective interpretations/populism and something that in the vast majority of cases is harmless and safe will be made illegal and stigmatized.

      If anyone wishes to play the "we must protect the children" card, then good education is the solution, not restricting freedoms.

  6. Disco-Legend-Zeke

    How Will I Ever Find...

    ...exercise videos?

  7. Tristan Young

    Not surprised!


    ICANN - another organization that has questionable benefits, and hardly any relevance in the world.

    Perhaps learning IP addresses instead of domain names isn't so bad after all.

  8. davebarnes

    No premature ejaculation before its time

    slowly, slowly

    aah, that's better

  9. Dave Bell


    I don't know which way this is going to go in the end (as the actress said to the Bishop) but this delay means nobody can complain about a hasty decision.

    Trouble is, this makes it too easy for censorship. The porn business isn't going to want to rely on it. It's not going to make it "safer" for a parent searching for cheap school uniforms/

  10. mark l 2 Silver badge

    never going to force existing sites to xxx

    While xxx would give porn peddlers more domains to play with its not ever going to be some magical way of boxing off all porn on the internet to one domain name.

    Your are never going to be able to force all webmaster to move their existing sites to xxx, firstly there would be a HUGE cost in doing this as having designed adult websites myself i know that some of webmasters own 100s or even thousands of domains that will all be expiring at different times some maybe nearly 10 years from now. Plus who is going to police the none xxx domains and check to see if there is porn on them?

    What happens when you have to competing existing domains say and who both would want to domain? And at what point do you define a site as being porn and make it go to xxx would page 3 and lads mag sites such as nuts with girls in underwear and topless be porn?

    A technical way of webmasters keeping their exisiting domains but making it easier to block would be to have all porn sites on a different port which can easily be blocked by firewalls. I think port no 80085 is suitably fitting

    1. Steve Roper

      Port 80085?

      Yes, it would be a fitting port number - if it existed. Port numbers are 16-bit, which means they run from 0 to 65535. So until we move to 32-bit port numbering your booby port fantasy will have to remain firmly in the realm of your imagination for the time being...

      Although you could use the TFTP port (69) - it would be just as appropriate! :)

  11. Etrien Dautre
    Paris Hilton

    See Dot Forty Five

    why not just to give the world .45 tld then...

    and those beautiful (sometimes) pics which one(~s) must be vvvery tired to keep on trawling through for any worthy phish in... there was an attempt to issue a directive to make things worse (hairy, mature, gay, etc.), but the hq finds it looking untrustworthy and undeservedly shocking for those few who read more from the thin air then from the thick ground. the decision was declined, go on enjoying with Lider/Liga/1-ПК, etc @ 5 items. poor kgremlins, your time is coming soon.

    see any joke alert in her looking @ uedoha*?

    *either dead or half alive.

  12. Mark M.
    Big Brother

    A sneaky way for governments to control the intarwebs?

    If the .XXX TLD becomes reality, how long before some dim-witted prude of a politician or judge tries to impose a ruling that all ISPs in <insert State or Country of choice here> filter out all .XXX TLDs on the basis that one or two sites on that domain that they purposefully examined "in great detail" offended their prudish morals?

    How many days between the .XXX TLD going live and the first court order from any country globally to try and block it gets issued? less than a month? less than a week?

    The smart on-line porn publishers will just ignore the new .XXX domain and try to stick with the .COM or whatever they currently have that seems to bypass any domain driven filters to reach their dependant addicts.

  13. Christopher Martin

    ICANN loves money

    They know that porn site operators have money and are willing to spend it on domain names. This proposal does absolutely nothing for the internet (unless they intend it as a stepping-stone to banning porn from other domains). All it means is that the owner of, .net, .org, .biz, and .ca now needs to register too. It doesn't help parental controls, because little Timmy can just change xxx to com and probably get the same website.

  14. James Woods

    the real problem

    Is as what's hinted in alot of comments here and on other sites. The existing porn sites don't want to lose those domains they paid alot of money for.

    However, sometimes life isn't always fair and if your in the pornography you already know this. Perhaps these companies can welcome themselves to the 'free market' that we somewhat have and buy what's available.

    This crap about other sites getting first dibbs at names is retarded, and I run some adult sites myself.

    Let .xxx reign, makes it very easy for parents and other to block porno. Im also a conservative.

    Theres less "porn" in the porn business then there is in our politics here in the US.

  15. heyrick Silver badge

    Who would use this?

    At the moment you have porn domains and sites scattered all over, .com and .ru and alsorts.

    If we introduce .xxx then it will provide only two benefits - firstly, it will be pretty damn obvious it is a porn domain (as if the rest of the name, something like "hotlesbiancum" wasn't itself a bit of a clue) and it will make it very easy to block the content (if name ends "xxx" then...).

    Porn companies are in it for the money, like bankers and RIAA and SEOs. Why would any company willingly choose a domain extension that would make it easier to block them?

    Thus begging the question - who came up with this bright idea in the first place?

  16. Anonymous Coward


    More like ICANN'T.

    The internet was *invented* for the sole purpose of making porn easier to find. Does it really matter what the websites are called?

    1. jake Silver badge


      "More like ICANN'T."

      I agree. ICANN has further devolved into a debating society, not unlike ToastMasters. If they are not careful, they will have what little power they have left removed. Good thing? Bad thing? Depends on who winds up with the ability to change things ...

      "The internet was *invented* for the sole purpose of making porn easier to find.

      No. It wasn't. It was invented as a wide area network to research wide area networking.

      "Does it really matter what the websites are called?"

      No. But the prudes of this world seem to think that making a .porn TLD would somehow legitimize porn ... when in reality, porn's here to stay, regardless.

      My feeling is still the same as it has been since the mid-eighties ... Having a "porn only" TLD would be a good thing, *IF* it had been implemented a quarter century ago.

      Unfortunately, the IdiotsInCharge[tm] didn't realize that this thing would go commercial ...

  17. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Load of crap

    This is a load of crap, all it will do is enable censors to block access to XXX sites. People will buy them if i comes about but the .com versions will definitely stay online and there is nothing they can do to stop it.

  18. Yes Me Silver badge

    It's funny how stupid ideas never go away

    The story says the .xxx stupidity was first proposed by in 2000. (Judging by their site, they have no other business - so this really appears to be all about making free money by registering pointless aliases for existing dirty domains. Allegedly.)

    Actually the idea was certainly first proposed as early as 1998 (and most likely earlier). And it was pointed out then (and most likely earlier) that it was pointless, as far as protecting the innocent goes.

    Well, the person who proposed it 1998 claimed in 2004 that he did so earlier, anyway

    It's funny how stupid ideas never go away.

    1. jake Silver badge

      @Yes Me

      "Actually the idea was certainly first proposed as early as 1998 (and most likely earlier)."

      Try 1984ish.

      "And it was pointed out then (and most likely earlier) that it was pointless, as far as protecting the innocent goes."

      It's not a matter of protecting the innocent. It's matter of categorizing, so those of us who actually run the infrastructure can prioritize resources. Ever run a Usenet server? Porn has been a HUGE bandwidth user, almost from the git-go. Some Usenet providers choose not to use their own resources to provide that kind of bandwidth sink ... Likewise, if I run a small dial-up ISP (I have in the past), where I pay for bandwidth from a tier one provider, I might not want to allow my users to stream porn AT MY EXPENSE ... Far cheaper/easier to block it.

      I honestly see no issue with putting porn and other adult topics into their own drawer of the Internet variation of your local lending library's Dewey Decimal System. Allow it to exist, but allow those who would block it to block it (there are always proxies, making the blocking pointless, but whatever ... This is about making the technically illiterate law makers happy, before they ban TCP/IP networking entirely ...).

  19. Anonymous Coward

    I'd be happier...

    If everyone kept their existing domain names, but adult binary content was forced onto .xxx. That way its the best of both worlds - Mr Purveyor of Erotica can keep his site, but all his image links would point to a .xxx domain. That way we can block Adult images/video without impacting existing sites. Especially helpful for non-adult sites that may want to include adult images on occasion.

  20. Anonymous Coward


    ICANNT has p0rn?

  21. Anonymous Coward


    I think there should be a .booze tld and any content promoting or depicting alcohol should be banned from being accessible via any other domain. That includes theregister.booze because it has this icon.

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