Feeds

New Interwebs extensions edge ever closer to reality

Dot-xxx porn on the brink

Maximizing your infrastructure through virtualization

A new generation of dot-coms will edge closer to reality next week in Brussels, with one – dot-xxx – possibly being approved on the Friday.

The tri-annual meeting of Internet overseeing body ICANN in Brussels will focus on the fourth version of an “applicant guidebook” for those who want to start up and run new Internet extensions.

The process for liberalizing the domain name system at its “top level” has been years in the making, but the fourth version is expected to finally tackle the concerns of trademark holders and governments who have been worried about the impact a large expansion of the Internet’s naming system.

But even if the changes in the fourth version are accepted, Internet users will still likely have to wait until early 2012 before they can register domains under most of the extensions.

In the meantime, a range of new “internationalized domain names” or IDNs have started going live. The government-run extensions allow the non-Western alphabet to be used for the first time on the right of dot in Web addresses.

So far, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, and Russia have all had their extensions added to the Internet’s “root”; a further nine have already been approved; and another seven are in the pipeline (one from Bulgaria has been turned down for looking too similar to another).

More immediately, the organization’s Board has put discussion of an Internet extension specifically for pornography at the top of its agenda next week.

The dot-xxx application has been outstanding since 2004 and at one point was actually approved, but following a campaign by right-wing Christians in the US and subsequent pressure from the US government, the ICANN Board denied the application in 2007.

Fast-forward three years and the company behind dot-xxx has won an independent review into the decision to reject its application. The review panel found that ICANN had broken its own bylaws as well as international law in denying dot-xxx. As a result, ICANN’s Board is due to consider what to do with the dot-xxx application and is under pressure from all sides to make a decision on the last day of the conference. If approved, adult content providers could be registering dot-xxx domains by the end of the year.

And in a combination of these changes to the Internet’s infrastructure, tomorrow the company that runs the dot-tel extension will allow people to register internationalized versions of its domains, i.e. Jörn.tel. Dot-tel is an unusual Internet extension in that you use the domain name only as a way to store and display contact information; you can’t build a separate website.

Because the contact information is stored directly in the Internet’s domain name system, it is extremely easy and fast to get hold of the information. The impact of all this expansion at the top-level of the Internet – an area that few people are aware extends beyond their own country’s extension and dot-com – has been a matter of some conjecture in the domain name industry, resulting in a wide range of diametrically opposed predictions.

Whatever happens, new arms of the Internet will start. ®

The Essential Guide to IT Transformation

More from The Register

next story
Major problems beset UK ISP filth filters: But it's OK, nobody uses them
It's almost as though pr0n was actually rather popular
Google Nest, ARM, Samsung pull out Thread to strangle ZigBee
But there's a flaw in Google's IP-based IoT system
Orange spent weekend spamming customers with TXTs
Zero, not infinity, is the Magic Number customers want
US freemium mobile network eyes up Europe
FreedomPop touts 'free' calls, texts and data
Apple orders huge MOUNTAIN of 80 MILLION 'Air' iPhone 6s
Bigger, harder trouser bulges foretold for fanbois
'Two-speed internet' storm turns FCC.gov into zero-speed website
Deadline for comments on net neutrality shake-up extended to Friday
NBN Co execs: No FTTN product until 2015
Faster? Not yet. Cheaper? No data
Oh girl, you jus' didn't: Level 3 slaps Verizon in Netflix throttle blowup
Just hook us up to more 10Gbps ports, backbone biz yells in tit-for-tat spat
prev story

Whitepapers

Seven Steps to Software Security
Seven practical steps you can begin to take today to secure your applications and prevent the damages a successful cyber-attack can cause.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
Designing a Defense for Mobile Applications
Learn about the various considerations for defending mobile applications - from the application architecture itself to the myriad testing technologies.
Build a business case: developing custom apps
Learn how to maximize the value of custom applications by accelerating and simplifying their development.
Consolidation: the foundation for IT and business transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.