back to article Pr0n domain approved by ICANN

The ICANN approved the porn domain. Again. On Friday, the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) announced that it had entered an agreement with ICM Registry that allows the company to run .XXX as a top-level domain. "ICANN’s decision to give .XXX final approval is a landmark moment for the internet," …


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  1. JaitcH

    Wow, even the frigid prune from Ottawa approved?

    The Canadian ICANN representative is a civil servant who totes the Conservative Party flag - it's surprising she would do anything more than abstain.

    There is a minority government in Canada so it doesn't really represent 'all Canadians'.

    It will make it easier for the nanny states like Australia and the UK to protect their citizens from seeing what comes naturally.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      ... even the frigid prune?

      The logic between 'toting the Conservative Party flag' and being a 'frigid prune' leaves something to be desired.

      Nevertheless, if governance of pr0n on the internetz comes down to party politics then we would (almost) all have much to fear.

      1. Marvin the Martian

        "logic between CP and frigid leaves to be desired"

        You're thinking of the 80s, man, when the UK tories were riddled with rampant deviancy --- MPs erotically strangling themselves was the least of it. There was indeed no link then.

        Ah... I drink to them 80s.

    2. Gweilo


      "It will make it easier for the nanny states like Australia and the UK to protect their citizens from seeing what comes naturally."

      Really? How? Will all the porn on other TLDs just disappear?

      Why would anyone move a porn site to a domain that is going to be blocked in a great number of places? They may feel compelled to put up a mirror site in .xxx, but no one is going to give up their .com.

  2. Yes Me Silver badge

    No question mark needed

    Well, we *know* WTF in this case.

    Stupid, but ICANN set themselves up for this stupidity twelve years ago.

    1. tas

      ICANN set themselves up for this stupidity twelve years ago

      ICANN are their own worst enemy due to complete lack of finer understanding and rigorous clarity on their rules for TLD creation. At the very least, they should have setup a formal process where every risk, doubt and concern for the creation of new contentious domains (i.e. when they receive multiple large conflicting representations) has to be addressed in great detail before ANY kind of final approval is made. This would have tied up ICM for decades and given ICANN the breathing room to learn from their own experiences with other domains, benefits from extended consultation periods and enable them to re-write their own rules under ICM's bid.

      In addition, the more time they had given themselves, they would also have given to the world so that people of all viewpoints would realise that when everything to do with "ghetto-ization" of the Net, ICANN becoming the Internet's censor, etc is stripped away, they would essentially be creating a redundant virtual space to be monopolised by a random individual who would be able to receive and charge extra ordinary fees within an entire TLD. That is, its entirely about money making, even to the benefit of ICANN!

      In the end, ICANN's multiple conflicting final decision-making and headquarter presence also opened them up to the harshest-consequences and "creative" legal environment the world has ever seen, i.e. the US legal system. I imagine the threat of 9-figure sum damages, and the precedence setting, from such an outcome would have a powerful effect on their ultimate decision, greatly in favour of the complainant, i.e. ICM who would be the beneficiary of the XXX domain.

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Paris Hilton

    That's a relief then

    It'll make typing what should be the easiest URL - - a one-handed job once this comes into play, which seems to be the point of these web-sites. So I'm told.

    Ho ho.

    Paris. Obviously.

    1. Martin Lyne


      Did you comically mistype your supposedly one handed url?

      I approve anyway..

      1. Elmer Phud


        "Did you comically mistype your supposedly one handed url?"

        Have you tried the 'error'?


  4. Graham Marsden

    "For the first time...

    "there will be a clearly defined web address for adult entertainment"

    Sure, and *everyone* is immediately going to migrate their porn content over to it...

    "out of the reach of minors"

    And if you believe that, I can do you a very good deal on Tower Bridge.

    "and as free as possible from fraud or malicious computer viruses"

    Howls of derisive laughter, Bruce!

    "We believe consumers will be more prepared to make purchases on .XXX sites, safe in the knowledge their payments will be secure"

    And, of course, you'll compensate them when the Russians/ Nigerians/ Anyone Else gets their hands on these domains and start pumping out or or...?

    1. Tom 35

      Missed one.

      "We believe consumers will be more prepared to make purchases on .XXX sites, safe in the knowledge their payments will be secure"

      Don't forget that he will be running the only payment system allowed, and will be taking a cut from every sale (just to make sure it's safe or course) and if you have both .com and .xxx you have use his payment system for both.

      He must have made a deal with Apple, he gets a cut of all the porn, Apple gets a cut of everything else.

    2. Marvin the Martian
      Paris Hilton

      "Free from viruses" indeed

      How did they propose to achieve this. Scriptkiddie enforcement --- "hey, get tha virus off this 'ere domain, put it on a .org or .net or .com, not 'ere laddie! --- or something? A special filter that only works on a magic .xxx ingredient? Voodoo?

      PH because I'm as puzzled, and the question of viruses acquired from dodgy sources.

  5. ratfox Silver badge
    Thumb Down


    He got what he wanted. Loads of web acreage, and he is the one who gets to rent it.

    I still don't get why they ever took this seriously.

  6. Anonymous Coward

    XXX gets thumbs up *what* again?

    Already got it and on the way out the door.

  7. Anonymous Coward

    .gov and p0rn industry - "here, let me give you a helping hand?"

    "... the ICANN Board has dangerously undervalued the input from governments worldwide,”...

    I'm so confused. So the governments are supporting the p0rn industry's position? And the p0rn industry is saying "listen to the governments?" And nobody's admitting the incongruities here? Gaahh!

    (In a prior incarnation of $elf I was associated with a startup that (at that time back when) had a good shot at a p0rn-blocking PC program. All the groups and organizations that you'd expect to be anti-p0rn _loved_ the demo, praising it to the skies, privately. But when asked to endorse it publicly they freaked and scuttled away squeaking "impossible, impossible". Seems the thought of *any* linkage between their good selves and p0rn was too much for them. "How could you know it was any good unless you had tested it yourselves against real pppp0rn?" was the question they couldn't handle being asked. The propensity for some people to self-defeating self-delusion still fascinates/horrifies me.)

  8. John Tserkezis

    I predict it will never come about.

    By the time this is all over, everyone and their dogs will be charging that much, no-one will be able to afford the "rent".

    Or, the only ones there will be virus-riddled, over-priced, over-clothed soft porn crap.

    And everyone will still get their porn via the existing means anyway.

    1. frank ly

      Different Strokes

      "..over-clothed soft porn crap."

      What if the clothes are good quality, thick leather, with lots of straps and buckles....?

      I'm going, I'll get it. You can guess which one it is.

  9. MonkeyBot

    Purchases on .xxx sites

    "We believe consumers will be more prepared to make purchases on .XXX sites"

    The reason I'm not prepared to pay for it is because the net is awash with all the free porn you could want, not because I don't trust .com domains.

    The only way I could see this being useful is if you're selling something that, whilst legal, is such a small niche market that it's hard to locate.

    1. mmiied

      hands up thouse who pay for porn?

      are mr smith I bleave your wife wants a word with you

  10. the spectacularly refined chap

    Clearly defined web access?

    As if all the established porn sites with jealously guarded domain names are going to suddenly abandon them in favour of only using .xxx domains. Is or or any other name suddenly going to become available? Of course not. They will still be up and open for business.

    This accomplishes nothing in terms of screening adult content. It is nothing more than a land grab by a private enterprise who now has monopoly control of a TLD and the exclusive opportunity to earn money for next to nothing.

  11. Dave Bell

    All so predictable

    Some porn sites will certainly use this domain, maybe most. Is a domain name going to be so terribly expensive? It's an advertising sign for them.

    Some governments will block the domains totally.

    Wait for governments to start using the ,xxx domains as targets for searches for "suspect" IP addresses. Suddenly, the porn business is going to be looking for more IP addresses, and their customers may need to access more addresses.

    Is this how IPv6 is going to really take off, another new published technology riding to success on the beast with two backs?

  12. Christoph

    Only approved applications?

    "all applications must be approved by the International Foundation for Online Responsibility"

    Is this supposed to be how they will keep dodgy operators out? By an approval process?

    Either it will be too tight and reject legitimate bids or too loose and let in crooks. In fact those will overlap.

    And it could only work if it's easier to find porn there than elsewhere on the net. Which is, quite frankly, ludicrous.

    Who, in which country, decides what classes as porn? Who decides what kinds of operation are legitimate?

    Do they really think that porn operators will pay to restrict themselves to a domain that is trivial to block? Even if there is some advantage to having such a domain, they can simply point a non-xxx domain to the same server.

    What advantage is this to anyone at all except the people selling the domains?

  13. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Down


    "We believe consumers will be more prepared to make purchases on .XXX sites, safe in the knowledge their payments will be secure"

    Are they doing some uber duper vetting on websites before they allow them to have a domain. Do they require that penetration tests will be required on all parts of the website including the 3rd party payment processor?

    I don't think so somehow...

    1. Anonymous Coward

      Penetration tests?

      Yeah, I'm getting it.

    2. Tom 35

      including the 3rd party payment processor

      No they ban 3rd party payment processors, you have to use their payment system, at their rates.

  14. Oninoshiko

    mmmm.... shrimp

    sweet! .xxx just for pron!

    now can we go back to .org just for non-profs?

  15. Herby

    Of course the alternative... to have your "ordinary" site in the "xxx" domain. There you will probably NOT be subjected to all sorts of phishing, and spam attacks. It might even be peaceful.

    Of course, what about those domains that are dutifully registered in ".com". Who will register "" for example? Then again, it might host the NSFW content we see here anyway. At least I'd assume that what is going on.

    1. mmiied

      so meny jokes so much posibility of getting banned

  16. Anonymous Coward

    An alternative use for .xxx

    Pirate sites. Arrr. Gives me some of that thar XXX rum, me harties!

    1. ravenviz

      Re: pirates

      Pirate sites are already registered under the .arr TLD. Duh!

  17. A B 3

    Lots of fail

    By itself you won't know which country the server is in and will end up at the mercy of crooks. Otherwise who will be policing the approvals? Will government agency x in country x be deciding what is moral and what isn't?

    I think porn is going to be the first thing booted off the net thanks to the NWO.

  18. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Excellent news

    if anyone needs me, I shall be in the lab getting my cybersquat on

  19. ShaggyDoggy


    All those corporates will have to register to prevent e.g.

    The thing is, if they don't have pron on those sites, they should be kicked off the .xxx

    Can't wait for .wtf

    1. Tom 35

      All ready taken care of

      You can reserve your to prevent a porn site from using it. Of course there is a charge for it. So you still have to pay not to have a porn site.

      I wonder who will get first dibs on

      1. Jedit

        Beats me...

        ... Mary's been dead for years.

        Yeah, yeah, yeah ... on my way already.

  20. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

    @ prune from Ottawa approved

    So not because they can ensure that .xxx is blocked everywhere for the 'good of the children' ?

    ps I think you mean prude, prunes are tasty and quite good for your health

  21. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    can i now say "FUCK" and "CUNT" without any discrimination or censorship.

  22. Velv

    Am I missing something here?

    What is stopping any company running a website out of .com, .org, .net, .uk, .fr, .ru or any other top level domain? Does the introduction of .xxx force the adult industry to use it, and prevent porn sites on other domains (which would be impossible to control worldwide)?

    So all ICANN have approved is a niche market for porn sites that want to operate to a particular "code". A "Best Western" type affiliation for those that want it. All the rest will carry on exactly as they do now.

    1. Raife Edwards
      Big Brother

      What innocent observers are missing...

      The simple fact is, no one outside of a couple of small groups (mostly politicians, prudes, a small number of people who will make a ton of money off of this... and the severely-ignorant) have ever really supported the ".XXX" domain. However, another fact is that identifying and corralling certain types of speech are absolutely essential to its elimination, persecution, and other forms of manipulation, exploitation, and (YES...) censorship.

      The next step is legislative, REQUIRING such "adult content" to be isolated within such an easily controlled, and blocked, "domain" (even though, EVERYONE has a different idea as to what "adult content" actually is... and, what is (or, is not) "acceptable"... creating a horrific can-of-worms). I can see years (if not decades) of squabbling and abuses (locally, nationally, and internationally). And, all the while, the ".XXX" domain (and its associated legislation) will be used as a CLUB, to trample free-expression, and access ( the same self-righteous, self-obsessed, groups and individuals that always scream about "safety", and "protecting the children"... for their-own agendas).

      So, soon... disseminating any information about "sex" in any context on the Internet (or "ISPs" merely allowing "access" to such content) becomes such an onerous minefield, that restrictions, dangers, and costs will abound, and more of our freedoms (personal, social, and monetary) will vanish

      At the absolute best, this is just an asinine waste of time, or just another scheme to, artificially, and forcibly, extract revenue. At worst, this is a concerted effort to attack basic human-rights.

      Either way... it's B-A-D.

      1. '); DROP TABLE comments; --

        Thank you

        I couldn't believe that it took until your comment for someone to point out the REAL reason behind the .xxx TLD.

        This is exactly it, folks - one the .xxx TLD approval goes through, you watch governments around the world start legislating that anything smutty or even remotely erotic cannot be published under a .com TLD. (or .info, or .anythingotherthanxxx for that matter)

        This is exactly why the adult industry is opposed to the idea. Once governments have forced all the porn onto .xxx, they'll be corralled into an easily censorable block that any government interested in sublimating sex for nationalistic fervour a la George Orwell will certainly do so.

        Meanwhile, the government's chosen lapdog gets rich off all the porn sites pushed into his TLD by their legislation, effectively enabling him to create a monopoly as well as the ability to censor whatever porn he doesn't like. Marvellous.

        This is a sad day for the internet.

  23. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

    @Am I missing something here

    ICANN think that online porn companies and their customers want an official 'x-rated' branding and that they will both be willing to pay for this.

    ICANN and reality don't really get together as often as they should

  24. The Beer Monster

    I don't thing the pr0n purveyors

    will get rid of their .coms

    After all, you don't keep all your xxx in one basket...

    1. The Beer Monster



      Must use spill chucker.

  25. David Lucke

    Submit post: Pr0n domain approved by ICANN

    OK, I'm confused. The sides and arguments seem to have reversed from the last time we had this kerfuffle .

    Last time around, the porn side was well in favour of .xxx for free-speech reasons, because it would give them an area of the net that would let them put porn without interference, and the right-wing christian protect-our-children lot were dead set against it because it was making porn ok and creating a safe harnour for the evilness and they wouldn't be able to protect our children from it.

    Now the positions are reversed, the pro-porna and free-speech lot are suddenly against it because its not a safe-harbour anymore, its suddenly a jail, and the anti-porn lot suddenly reckon its fine because now they can block the whole tld and get everything.

    What the hell is going on?

  26. Loyal Commenter Silver badge

    Ho ho ho

    "We believe consumers will be more prepared to make purchases on .XXX sites, safe in the knowledge their payments will be secure."

    About as secure as jumping off a very tall building with no safety net or parachute, onto a bed of sharpened spikes?

  27. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Wow, DNS had improved!

    "For the first time there will be a clearly defined web address for adult entertainment, out of the reach of minors and as free as possible from fraud or malicious computer viruses"

    I didn't know it could do that! Here I was thinking it just resolved a name to an IP address.

  28. Anonymous Coward

    Y? Y? Y?


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