The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) has recently approved “.xxx” as the new internet domain name extension for the adult entertainment industry. The ICANN is a non-profit corporation responsible for managing, maintaining and assigning Internet protocol addresses and ensuring the operational stability of the Internet. This new domain allows adult entertainment companies to register their website address with an “.xxx” extension instead of a “.com” extension. ICM Registry, LLC, is the company that is overseeing the transfers to the new extension, while the actual sales are being handled by sites like GoDaddy.com.
The first registration period, called the Sunrise period, began on September 7, 2011 and will end on October 28, 2011. During this period, brand owners in the adult entertainment industry can apply for the new extension (Sunrise A) and brand owners outside of the adult entertainment industry can apply to block such domain registrations to safeguard their marks (Sunrise B). Under Sunrise B, this blocking period is set for at least 10 years. The Sunrise period will be followed by a Landrush period, running from November 8, 2011 to November 25, 2011. During the Landrush period, the domain names will be distributed by a private auction. Finally, the period of general availability will start on December 6, 2011. During this period, anyone who wants to operate an adult entertainment website can register any available .xxx domain on a ‘first-come, first-serve’ basis.
This new extension has brought good news to some and bad news to others. On one hand, it has brought a big smile on the faces of parents, employers and others who can now block access to the “.xxx” websites within their networks more easily. On the other hand, some are faced with a big challenge because of the possibility that the adult entertainment companies may register and use any business or domain name with an “.xxx” extension. So, businesses outside of the adult entertainment industry that don’t want their business name to be associated with adult content would have the option of applying to block such domain registrations.
© 2011 Nissenbaum Law Group, LLC