opinion

FSC Issues Letter to GAC Addressing .XXX Concerns

Diane Duke

Free Speech Coalition (FSC) yesterday submitted a letter to the ICANN’s Governmental Advisory Committee (GAC) regarding concerns over the proposed approval of the .XXX “sponsored” Top Level Domain (sTLD). The action comes after Internet domain regulator ICANN’s decision to consult with GAC about key issues regarding the proposed .XXX domain, prior to the ICANN board voting on the issue at their Dec 5 meeting, in Cartagena, Columbia.

 
“In our letter, FSC emphasizes that ICM’s proposed .XXX sTLD poses a threat not only for adult entertainment community, but also to the stability and security of the Internet as a whole,” FSC Executive Director Diane Duke said. “The GAC has an inherent understanding of the issues and hopefully will guide the ICANN Board in the right direction.”

 
The letter is accompanied by other documentation and outlines specific points that would present significant obstacles to the approval of a .XXX sTLD.

Those points include:
• ICANN’s lack of authority to oversee content-based regulation, and its inability to approve any other entity to oversee content-based regulation, in regards to establishing a domain category.

• Lack of support for the proposed .XXX sTLD from the “sponsor” community, which is necessary for approval.• Use of fees from .XXX domain registrations to fund proposed regulatory board (IFFOR) in violation of free speech and free association rights.

• Inconsistencies in documentation provided by domain registrar ICM and its president Stuart Lawley, in their ongoing campaign for approval of .XXX.

• Lack of transparency by ICM during the approval process, overall.
GAC has previously expressed its disapproval of the .XXX domain, and documentation confirming this was included in the packet sent by FSC.

FSC opposes the proposed .XXX sTLD because it is not supported by the adult online community; it would cost adult online businesses millions every year in unnecessary fees; and it would make censorship efforts easier for anti-adult entities.

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