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Bush blocks bush on .xxx

Porn TLD delayed by political pressure

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The controversial .xxx TLD domain has been delayed after the chairman of ICANN's Government Advisory Committee (GAC), Mohamed Sharil Tarmizi reacted to political and public pressure to ask for a postponment in implementing of the cyberporn ghetto.

In a letter to ICANN's Board of Directors, Tarmizi says he believes "the Board should allow time for additional governmental and public policy concerns to be expressed before reaching a final decision on this TLD". .xxx was due to be finally approved on Tuesday after getting the green light back in June, but several governments have approached GAC expressing concerns about the whole sordid affair.

Rather deliciously, Tarmiz says in his letter: "I am omitting the specific TLD here because experience shows that some email systems filter out anything containing the three letters associated with the TLD", which has to be something of a first for ICANN: having created the .xxx beast in the first place, it now can't mention it in its correspondence for fear that porn-busting email nannys might incinerate the offending domain.

Which is, of course, one of the points of sticking all the smut under its own TLD. That, nonetheless, is not enough for George Bush's administration which seemingly appointed Mr Michael Gallagher, assistant secretary at the US Commerce Department, to speak for decent, God-fearing Americans when he wrote that "[we have] received nearly 6,000 letters and e-mails from individuals expressing concern about the impact of pornography on families and children", when requesting that the matter be reviewed.

Tarmizi's full letter to the ICANN board can be found here. ®

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