Hoist by there own petard
ICANN are useless.
The US Congress has had a second stab at trying to get Amazon its own internet extension in a letter to the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN). The Congressional Trademark Caucus has written to the domain name overseer's CEO and chair complaining about the decision to deny the online retailer its …
Why the hell should the US Government care about who gets a domain name that it has no specific interest in?
I mean, there is the obvious reason of lobbying and money, but what is their public reason? Yes, Amazon (the corporation) have a strong case but why should that result in the US Government arguing on their behalf?
Ever heard of something called "The Barrel of Pork"? It starts smelling of it by Dupont Circle where Embassy Row (on Massachusetts Avenue) joins Connecticut Avenue and reaches it highest stench by the Mall on Constitution Avenue by the whereabouts of the U.S. Congress Office buildings. All lobbyists in the ol' U.S. of A. throw their money, er pork, in that general direction. Been there, seen it done.
Absolutely, but my question is: what is their public reason?
I.e. why are they suggesting that anyone should take their input and exhortations as relevant to the case at hand rather than just writing it off as the lobbyist-backed, money-driven dog and pony show that everyone has come to know and love from politicians?
They don't need a public reason. The letter is signed by J. Randy Forbes of Virginia and Suzan DelBene of Washington. The same Washington that serves as home base to Amazon and the same Virginia that houses some of Amazon's biggest cloudy data centers. Reason one, there's a lot of potential voters who are employed by Amazon in each state. Reason two, these two congress critters want to make sure Amazon has no reason to expand their operations elsewhere.
The letter is signed by J. Randy Forbes of Virginia and Suzan DelBene of Washington
Yes. They're also co-chairs of the Trademark Caucus, a new body (formed just last year) to winkle more dollars out of corporate contributors by promising to rattle sabres in defense of this most trivial form of IP. So this is their job.
And they're the only two signatures, so it's hardly a letter "from the US Congress". Two Reps doth not a Congress make. Had the article said "a letter from nearly 0.4% of the US Congress", it would have been accurate.
My take on the basic problem with the U.S. federal legislative as an outside the U.S., non-European, observer: bunch of mid-westerners and Mountain men that think theirs (gunracks, light trucks, ICBMs, etc.) should be bigger than everybody else's. They can't allow those banana republics in the US backyard to believe they can do anything that rocks the US supremacy boat; anyone who does must be kicked in the b***s and stomped on his/her face with a spurred heel. Much so in a historical period where McCarthism is again the political vogue in D.C., but at a global scale.
Having let the steam, that is the plain public reason nonetheless. They think that a U.S. corporation that funnels money into the barrel of pork is more important than the U.S.'s diplomatic and economic relations with Brazil, Peru and their neighbors (all are a bunch of commies anyway; Colombia would be except but then, people in the streets are sniffing drugs controlled by leftist and rightist guerrillas from down there: effing South America Gold Triangle). I bet some even dare to think they can nuke 'em all. Sounds horrible but that's a U.S. politician for you; worse if Republican.
amazon.co.uk or amazon.com (int al) - that's the home for a commercial entity. .amazon should be the webby home for either the river or the female warriors.
Stop fucking around with t'tubes. The land grab for silly .bollocks TLDs simply slows down the internet through adding extra load to the DNS and adds absolutely no value for the end user, who finds a site through a search engine or bookmarks and rarely knows where the URL bar actually is in the first place.
I quite agree. All the additional TLDs just mean more money for old rope for the registries, and more for corporations to shell out to either protect their brand, or if they're megacorps with big pockets for vanity domains that little people can only dream about.
It's certainly not helping to address the gulf between haves and have nots, and the only ones who really win (like lawyers in court proceedings) are the registrars (and investors in registrars).
"It's not like those domains are going to be recognized by every DNS anyway."
Perhaps the best way to fight this nonsense is for everyone who operates a DNS server to reject TLD queries that have more than three characters in them. (It doesn't matter what the root nameservers are supporting, since it's a configuration error for pleb users to ask them anyway.) Reduce the value of vanity TLDs to zero and they'll go away.
"...we should require registrants to provide an office address of a house boat."
You know, when issues like this case arise, or when one remembers that a couple of months ago ICANN was complaining about the owner of .sucks' "predatory" reselling of domains under the TLD that ICANN knowingly created and sold off in the first place(!)...
...one might suspect that the humungus clusterf**k that is the pointless expansion of the TLD system was an utterly cynical and wilfully shortsighted move on ICANN's part done purely as a cash grab to force countless defensive registrations. But that can't be true, can it?
It pains me to say this... but it does look as if Amazon is technically in the right here. On the basis of the rules published by ICANN, there is no basis for the referenced gov'ts to complain about this award.
On the other hand, there is the established rule that any gov't that feels sufficiently strongly can complain about anything, without being required to give any reason...
Who wrote those rules? ICANN. Who agreed? Everyone who could be bothered. Who benefits? Well, obviously, there's some difference between that and "who expected to benefit", which is why we're where we are today.
This is nothing more than governments trying to say "It's our ball and it's our backyard so you play by our rules (which let us win), so ner!"
True, but I don't quite see the relevance.
> Strictly speaking, the Brazilian and Peruvian governments do not have rights over the name "Amazon"...
Well, there is your problem. Problem for everyone except US companies, that is. If you write the rules to permit companies naming themselves or their product after some existing entities, trademark that and force the original entity ‘out of business’, what do you expect to happen? Names like Amazon or Apple should be simply forbidden. I wonder how the congressmen would be pleased with a company named ‘US Congress’...
Since the Amazon River is actually called "Amazonas" in the Spanish and Portuguese-speaking countries of South America where the river flows, maybe they could have the .amazonas TLD, leaving .amazon for the so-named Seattle-based ecommerce company. (Although, why .amazon.com shouldn't suffice, I do not understand.)
> I have to continue this chain, not as good as amazon.amazon.amazon then.
My research suggests that we could keep this exchange going for another 289 to 294 iterations before we get to the very best possible amazon domain name.
Or we could stop here. :-)
why .amazon.com shouldn't suffice, I do not understand.
I can only guess that this is a defensive measure on the part of Bezos and friends. They don't want people to be able to register names such as igotscrewedby.amazon or bitemyshineymetalass.amazon to name a couple of the more polite domains.
If that's the case, is there be some middle ground where the two sides could meet? For instance if Amazon.com offered non-profits in the Amazonas region a free .amazon domain or something in exchange for the TLD.
"They don't want people to be able to register names such as igotscrewedby.amazon or bitemyshineymetalass.amazon to name a couple of the more polite domains"
There is an easy answer to that. I think I might go and register "justfucked.me". I am sure I can make as much money as ".sucks". How much am I bid for my new "amazon" hostname? How much for "apple"?
Approve the name but assign it to the Brazilian tribes living in the amazon. Then Amazon (the company) can rent the name off them, in much the same way that Tuvalu does with .TV. Amazon gets it's name, Brazil gets it's pride, and some under developed areas of Brazil get some funding.
... which in turn is named after a Greek legend (some would say male fantasy). On th e'who thought of it first' argument it would have to go to Greece- not the Spanish and Portuguese colonies who delight in making life impossible for their indigenous populations- except when they think they can make a buck. Always surprises me that thye don't get on with the US- they have so much in common.
"...even though it is the world's longest and possibly most famous river and it runs through their territories."
General consensus is that The Nile is the longest, although there is no world governing body that performs the measurement. Peru and Brazil contest that the Amazon is longest using their own measurement criteria, but then we'd all have the longest if we could use our own measuring.
The Amazon is certainly the largest both by area drained and volume flow at its mouth.
This is what happens when morons who wouldn't recognise a hierarchial naming structure if it recursed them in the backside have any power over naming systems. I bet they all dump all their files on their desktop as well. Subdirectories? What's that? Force the bloody lot of them to use DOS 1.0.