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Why the .XXX Domain is a Bad Idea That Won't Die

Zonk posted more than 7 years ago | from the braaaaiiins-and-pooooornnnn dept.

The Internet 322

Reader tqft tipped us to an opinion piece on the UK site The Guardian, which lays out the reasons why article writer Seth Finkelstein feels the .XXX domain is a terrible idea. You may recall that last year (being an election year and all), the concept of a triple-X ghetto was revived, considered, and then quashed all in the space of a few months. We also recently discussed the fact that the idea just won't die, as the company ICM Registry pushes ICANN to allow them to pass out the names by Summer. Finkelstein primarily argues that the new domain is a bad idea from a business point of view. Ignoring for a moment the issue that much of this content is already labeled, he sees this as primarily a means for ICM Registry to gain a monopoly on what is sure to be a hot-selling product. Speculators, pornographers, and above-board companies will all jump on the namespace in an effort to ensure that their domain is represented ... or not, as the case may be. Where do you fall on this issue? Would a .XXX domain be helpful for parents, or just a political salve/moneymaking scam?

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Why not? (1, Interesting)

techno-vampire (666512) | more than 7 years ago | (#17780916)

Why not just give the pr0n industry its own tld and be done with it? Yes, the bluenoses will scream bloody murder, but they're doing that about pr0n already, so what's the difference?

Re:Why not? (4, Insightful)

recursiv (324497) | more than 7 years ago | (#17781010)

Be done with what? Good luck getting the porn off of .com domains.

Re:Why not? (3, Interesting)

techno-vampire (666512) | more than 7 years ago | (#17781066)

Be done with what? The arguing over whether or not we should have the domain. Once we get it, I'd bet most of the pr0n will move there for "prestige" reasons, and most new adult sites will be there. In the long run, I can't see what possible harm it can do to let them have their tld.

Re:Why not? (3, Interesting)

daeg (828071) | more than 7 years ago | (#17781158)

Why would you ever move to .xxx? Prestige or not, it's just too easy to block .xxx. Access is everything to the porn industry.

While a few of the large-profile sites can afford to move (the subscription-based ones), the smaller sites that are based on the shared subscription model (you pay $XX/year for access to all member sites, those member sites take a portion of profit) will just multiply, compounding any filtering problems.

Has anyone actually investigated whether the XXX industry actually WANTS the tld? The only thing I've seen personally is the company that is pushing .xxx, and they obviously only want to make a big shiny penny (just like every other stupid specialized domain, e.g., .mobi).

Re:Why not? (4, Interesting)

Matilda the Hun (861460) | more than 7 years ago | (#17781544)

Access is everything to the porn industry.

You're not going to sell porn to people who aren't looking for it. And a TLD makes it easier to find, how is it a bad idea again?

Re:Why not? (3, Funny)

1u3hr (530656) | more than 7 years ago | (#17781662)

And a TLD makes it easier to find, how is it a bad idea again?

What does a TLD have to do with finding porn, or anything else? Are you gong to make a list of words, append .xxx, and type them into your address bar:,....

Re:Why not? (1)

ceejayoz (567949) | more than 7 years ago | (#17781714)

No, but if you type (say) "lingerie" in Google and you're looking for pics, not online stores, being able to filter your results down to a specific TLD would be handy.

Per the proposal they are _required_ to move (5, Informative)

JPriest (547211) | more than 7 years ago | (#17781272)

From here [] . It says that the domains would be required to move.

Here is the direct quote:
"Any commercial Internet site or online service that "has as its principal or primary business the making available of material that is harmful to minors" would be required to move its site to that domain. Failure to comply with those requirements would result in civil penalties as determined by the Commerce Department."

Please do not blindly support the bill without first understanding just what exactly it proposes.
I had another post covering why I think this is bad here [] and proposed an alternate solution here []

Re:Per the proposal they are _required_ to move (5, Insightful)

IWannaBeAnAC (653701) | more than 7 years ago | (#17781610)

Hmm, I doubt the rest of the world would appreciate the ISA Department of Commerce dictating to them what is, and is not, porn. Especially considering how puritanical the USA is compared with Europe, and similarly how puritanical the Middle East is compared with everyone else.

The Europeans will be saying breasts, even full-frontal nakedness, isn't necessarily porn,

The Americans can't tell the difference between even partial nakedness and sex, so will force half of .eu to be under .xxx instead

The Muslims will continue to he shocked at all the women not wearing Burkhas.

Re:Why not? (5, Insightful)

Harmonious Botch (921977) | more than 7 years ago | (#17781036)

Because the implied assumption is that the whole net except .XXX must be protected, that it all must be made child-safe. This eventually results in treating all adults like children. It is far better to give children their own ( such as .kid or .chd ) and retain the assumption that we adults are capable of making decisions for ourselves.

No, .XXX is bad (5, Interesting)

JPriest (547211) | more than 7 years ago | (#17781124)

It isn't the porn industry that wants the change. Creating a red light district would arguably make porn easier to find for children, and at the same time if you don't force them all off the .coms's you have not really solved the problem of filtering. Who has the right to say porn is not welcome on the rest of the Internet anyway? The United States? George Bush?

In some countries it is considered wrong for women to lift their veils so other men can see their faces, and in some women walk around with no shits on like men. Sure there are obvious cases, but who has the final word on what is and isn't sexually explicit content? Who is going to pay to enforce these new morals and who's morals?

Do the American tax payers launch a multi billion dollar crusade to purge the internet of porn and bring our Christian morals to the internationally based Internet?

Early proposals for .xx were to mandate that all porn sites use some form of age verification (ie credit card). With all the fraud on the internet do you honestly believe entering your credit card number and personal into on every porn site you see is a good idea? What age constitutes a "minor" anyway? 18 y/o like in the US? How many people here have never seen any porn before the age of 18? How did you turn out?

To me this only sounds like a pathway for rampant fraud. I don't want to complain without offering up my own solution, so I think if anything is to be done then appending robots.txt to include a line for "Adult: /" where the webmaster of the site sees fit is a much better idea. I posted more on this suggestion here []

Re:No, .XXX is bad (2, Funny)

SashaMan (263632) | more than 7 years ago | (#17781398)

...and in some women walk around with no shits on like men. ... Do the American tax payers launch a multi billion dollar crusade to purge the internet of porn and bring our Christian morals to the internationally based Internet?

I'd just like to state that though I am non-Christian, I am thoroughly against people walking around with shits on.

Unless you're in to that stuff, sicko.

Re:No, .XXX is bad (2, Funny)

jlarocco (851450) | more than 7 years ago | (#17781500)

In some countries it is considered wrong for women to lift their veils so other men can see their faces, and in some women walk around with no shits on like men.

Assuming you meant "shirts," which country would that be? I think I may be going there soon for, um, business *cough*, and uh, I was just wondering if, um, coincidently, it may be the same country?

Re:No, .XXX is bad (1)

abstrak_tokatl (866054) | more than 7 years ago | (#17781546)

it wouldn't seem to me that it's a problem (as i have no issues with porn) but more of a listing of directory. Simular to the yellow pages. So it doesn't become an issue of morals and ethics, but more of just a listing and structure. The Dewey Decimal system comes to mind.

and of course people are going to "ban" said a domain, for their own reasons, but that plays little in to the organizational structure of the web. That is left up to the privateirs, not the goverment.

you arguement reaks of something like that of an old arguement of how the dewey decimal system and national geographics promotes masterbation amoung 1980s 13 year olds.

Re:No, .XXX is bad (1)

crashnbur (127738) | more than 7 years ago | (#17781666)

(In a discussion with free speech implications, you should be careful how you phrase your questions.)

In the United States, anyone has the right to say porn isn't welcome on the rest of the internet, including George Bush. We can say whatever we want.

In fact, we have a right to pursue that idea and even try to implement it, even to others' or our own detriment. That's one of the downfalls of democracy: sometimes the majority and/or those who represent them get it wrong.

Of course, when the actions of a decision-making body affects billions of people in every country in the world, it doesn't really matter what they do, because someone isn't going to like it. (Also, it seems to be a given that any time common sense points one way, political decisions go the opposite.)

Re:Why not? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17781142)

The bad idea isn't the .xxx domain itself. The bad idea is that the government has the right to classify information (or speech) that it doesn't own. It is wise to remember that the *purpose* of the .xxx domain is for censorship--nothing else.

Re:Why not? (2, Informative)

techno-vampire (666512) | more than 7 years ago | (#17781354)

What if it's strictly voluntary? If you have an adult site, you can have it under .xxx or not as you see fit. Then, those who don't want to be exposed to adult content can avoid it if that's what makes them happy and those who are interested in it can find it easier. So what if some countries block it at the routers? Isn't the Internet designed to work around damage?

Re:Why not? (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17781266)

If you mean PORN, why not say PORN? What is this p0rn shit?

Re:Why not? (0, Troll)

techno-vampire (666512) | more than 7 years ago | (#17781370)

It's not "p0rn," it's "pr0n." Haven't you ever heard of cut and paste?

Domain Names I Don't Want to See (1)

queenb**ch (446380) | more than 7 years ago | (#17781308)

Let me give you some good reasons:

That's just what I've got off the top of my head at 1AM. Frankly that last one is pretty scary.

Re:Domain Names I Don't Want to See (1)

techno-vampire (666512) | more than 7 years ago | (#17781384)

Would you rather see,,,, or

Re:Domain Names I Don't Want to See (4, Funny)

cashman73 (855518) | more than 7 years ago | (#17781612)

I'd rather not see, either!

Re:Domain Names I Don't Want to See (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17781650)

At least one good thing could come out of this:

Re:Why not? (1)

lanorien (1056426) | more than 7 years ago | (#17781532)

Why not add a whole slew of porn domains. That way there could be a wide variety of choices in our daily porn selection. I can think of .cum .fuk hmm... maybe .sex? Seems too trite perhaps

Re:Why not? (4, Insightful)

1u3hr (530656) | more than 7 years ago | (#17781640)

Why not just give the pr0n industry its own tld

RTFA. Or were you just gunning to get first post?

No one wants .xxx except the registrars, who would sell .xxx domains, speculators would would buy them to resell to companies defensively. Big companies would be forced to buy the .xxx rather than let one of the scumbags set up a site on, etc. Companies already buy .info, .biz, .net, .org and usually just park or redirect from them. There won't be any less porn on .com. It's just a complete scam.

Re:Why not? (2, Insightful)

techno-vampire (666512) | more than 7 years ago | (#17781730)

If the only people who want this new tld are the registers, nobody will use it. If so, what harm is done? As far as first post, I'm not a subscriber, and I'm astonished to have gotten it. At least it's something relevant, not a comment about getting first post.

Crazy (1)

Hao Wu (652581) | more than 7 years ago | (#17780918)

If a idea is bad, it should go away.

If I say I want no more coffee with reading my breakfast newspaper, then the waiter should go away and not pore another drink.

If pornography website is labeled acurate or inacurate due to domain ".XXX", then that label should go away like my breakfast waiter.

Re:Crazy (3, Funny)

thc69 (98798) | more than 7 years ago | (#17781006)

No more coffee with your paper? What, did you eat a caffeinated donut [] ?

Re:Crazy (1)

NosTROLLdamus (979044) | more than 7 years ago | (#17781070)

ha ha cause that was just posted

Heh... (5, Insightful)

Fnkmaster (89084) | more than 7 years ago | (#17780922)

Ignoring for a moment the issue that much of this content is already labeled

Yeah, it's labeled all right. About the time you see a writhing vulva on your screen, and a mega-penis thrusting repeatedly into it using the latest in animated gif technology, you may notice a small blurb of text that says "Please proceed only if you are 18 years of age or older".

Re:Heh... (4, Funny)

dreddnott (555950) | more than 7 years ago | (#17781032)

It's interesting to note that the "latest in animated gif technology" is 18 years old this year. I refer of course to the GIF89a specification. :)

No more tlds please... (4, Insightful)

Beuno (740018) | more than 7 years ago | (#17780928)

I'm not against it, I just want new tlds to stop being approved left and right just to make profit out of basically no service.
It's starting to get very complicated to rely on URLs and the amount of money you have to spend to keep your companys name in your hands is ridiculous.

Re:No more tlds please... (4, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17781562)

Register your company's name under one TLD, the one which your users are most familiar with. Then sue everyone who registers your trademarked name under any other TLD: The existing name registries trump the domain name system. There is no need to register under all TLDs. On the contrary, it only causes confusion for your users and can wreak havoc with your search engine ranking if you're not doing it exactly right.

Besides, we need many more TLDs. Not dozens more. Hundreds or thousands more. Only when there are too many domains to register under all will that insanity stop. Only then will other TLDs mean something. Today it's either .com or bust, because users rarely see something else. After all, the other TLDs are just partial duplicates of .com anyway. Even big country code TLDs often cause an unbelieving stare when the email address doesn't end in .com. The last part of the domain name isn't just a delimiter, it actually means something and can be something other than .com. It is very important that we get this message through to users. Too much mail gets misdirected to the .com domain when it should have gone to the CCTLD which belongs to the company that the user wanted to send the mail to. This has got to change, and the way is more choice, not less.

bad idea (4, Insightful)

insertwackynamehere (891357) | more than 7 years ago | (#17780932)

what constitutes porn? to a lot of people it's the act of sex between two people that is captured in a form of "real" media (photos or videos as opposed to paintings). however to a lot of america (or amerikkka as liberal websites would say :/) it is nudity in a medical or anatomy book when not viewed by an artist or doctor.

It won't die because you fools don't read RFCs (4, Informative)

Schraegstrichpunkt (931443) | more than 7 years ago | (#17780958)

Would a .XXX domain be helpful for parents

No. Really, stop asking [] .

I'm for it. I think. (5, Insightful)

Spacejock (727523) | more than 7 years ago | (#17780960)

I help to run web filtering at a small primary school, and while I realise a TLD like this won't shift all the crud into an easily-blocked area of the net, it's a good start. Of course, the downside is that nanny-state governments can then instruct ISPs to block the TLD, thus protecting their good citizens. Protecting primary school kids is one thing, but 'protecting' adults is a whole different ball game.

I guess I just argued for both sides of the equation. I think I'm getting fence splinters.

Re:I'm for it. I think. (2, Interesting)

Conception (212279) | more than 7 years ago | (#17780996)

On an aside, I think the only way to reliably filter at school is to have a white list of addresses approved at the firewall/router. There's just too much to blacklist reliably, and the list of whitelistable sites is probably pretty small. And with some method where kids can ask to have sites added for whatever reason, you should be able to grow the whitelist easily without worry about some bright kid circumventing or accidentally running across teh pR0n. Primary school kids don't need access to the whole internet, just the few kid safe spaces they need to do whatever they need to do.

Re:I'm for it. I think. (1)

DDLKermit007 (911046) | more than 7 years ago | (#17781502)

And primary school kids really shouldn't be on the internet at such a young age. Kids really shouldn't be online at a school until High School. Sure thats shortly after the time boys find out about girls & vice versa, but most people's insistence to make kids use the internet at such a young age is a bad idea. I'm positively shocked when I run across someone who can't navigate a library. It's stuff I learned in grade school, and I'm only 25!

Now as for High School theres just not practical way to do this. I was in HS back in 96-00 at an amazing public school that got insane amounts of money to put computers in every classroom for students (double-majored in Graphic Design & Drafting). Back then the internet was quite a bit safer, but even then they tried to filter the connections periodically (tried different ones like NetNanny & white-listing). None of them really worked too well. Always ended up just disabling them for myself, students, teachers, and we just went on our merry way. Which I know I was probably almost expelled a couple times for (good to have influential teachers on your side). Just glad I got through HS before this filtering nonsense started coming down too hard.

Will students get into things they shouldn't? Sure! But it's better than limiting the scope of what information they can access. It's not like the teachers didn't. I remeber at least one occasion of a teacher printing porn out on one of the drafting plotters. I certainly got a few laughs out of that one.

Re:I'm for it. I think. (1)

Grimbleton (1034446) | more than 7 years ago | (#17781568)

Hey now, I've been online since '96, when I was just barely ten, and look how I turned out. I post pointless replies on /.!

Re:I'm for it. I think. (2, Informative)

timmarhy (659436) | more than 7 years ago | (#17781034)

i applude your sane reasoned response, and i would like to add that the very definition of becomign and adult is that you don't -need- protection from new idea's or adult situations.

Re:I'm for it. I think. (1)

norton_I (64015) | more than 7 years ago | (#17781176)

I thought I was for an optional .xxx domain, but after reading the article, and especially reading ".sex considered harmful" [] I chanced my mind. While it is long and technical, the salient points (for me, and regarding host names for web services only) were:

First, due to the availability of redirects and other features, it is impossible to determine whether when I type something in the location bar or click on a link, whether I will end up at a .xxx labeled site. Thus, for an adult who wishes to police himself, the .xxx domain provides little extra protection to avoid seeing objectionable material before the more effective existing content labels show up in the form of huge tits.

Second, there is no security, nor any provision of security for the assignment of domain names to arbitrary IP addresses. In particular, this means that as owner of I can create an entry for to point to your web server, possibly creating a denial of service attack against you. Likewise a user with a name in a non-adult namespace can reference my adult site, even if I as a responsible webmaster have delegated all adult content to a .xxx TLD.

The second concerns can be largely but not completely handled through HTTP/1.1 virtual hosts, but that requires correct administrative practices on the part of all webmasters, and restraint on the part of content filters to not block any IP address pointed to by a .xxx address. Neither of which seem likely without penalties, and then we are back to the government (or ICANN) deciding what content should be in .xxx.

Content based filtering is a little harder, but I can't imagine it is hard to correctly identify most adult webpages that are not trying to hide. Excluding that, even a HTML attribute would be superior to hijacking internet naming systems which are not really designed to handle that sort of labeling information, and allow people who don't have control over their web server's virtual host configuration to still label their content if they so choose.

Re:I'm for it. I think. (1)

1u3hr (530656) | more than 7 years ago | (#17781706)

I help to run web filtering at a small primary school, and while I realise a TLD like this won't shift all the crud into an easily-blocked area of the net, it's a good start.

No, it's just more work. It would create a new set of porn sites which you'd block. Knowing they're being blocked by people like you, most sites, ESPECIALLY the most objectionable ones (i.e. the "crud"), will keep their .com site fully active. So what do you gain? And any site you admin will be blackmailed into buying the corresponding .xxx to prevent it being squatted and redirecting to a real porn site.

Lets just get this straight (1, Insightful)

macadamia_harold (947445) | more than 7 years ago | (#17780964)

Why the .XXX Domain is a Bad Idea That Won't Die

You've got two errors in the headline alone. 1. Porn is never a bad idea. 2. Porn will never die.

Re:Lets just get this straight (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17781128)

Why is it that people who can parse uncommented c code can't parse an english sentence?

The headline said neither of those.
1) It said .XXX domain is a bad idea. ( Ie: Forcibly putting all porn in .XXX ia a bad idea. )
2) It said that #1 won't die.

More like, "just won't quit..." (1)

ramonemc (751246) | more than 7 years ago | (#17780980)

Come on, where is the creativity for a story like that? How about "Triple XXX Domain on Virtual Viagra: The growing movement of the .xxx domain name just won't quit. However, the thrust of the movement is hardly straightforward...... blah blah blah.

Re:More like, "just won't quit..." (1)

techno-vampire (666512) | more than 7 years ago | (#17781094)

You misspelled V1@gr4.

Sci-Fi movie alert: Later on TCM at 2:00 AM EST (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17780982)

Coming up later on TCM, two all time Sci-Fi classics back to back:
  • Billy the Kid Vs. Dracula (1966) [2:00 AM]
  • Jesse James Meets Frankenstein's Daughter (1966) [3:30 AM]
(TCM is a commercial free cable channel -- Turner Classic Movies)

I think I represent the majority (4, Insightful)

Gazzonyx (982402) | more than 7 years ago | (#17780988)

I think I represent the majority of us here when I say, "Who cares?".

This seems to be rooted solely in politics and the money thereof. Let's leave this one to the politicians, knowing when everything is said and done, more is said than done.

Just my $.02

Re:I think I represent the majority (1)

melikamp (631205) | more than 7 years ago | (#17781448)

I agree. One thing is for sure: whatever technical measures they might implement and whatever laws they might pass, the Interned will still resemble a series of tu... I mean, a truck full of x-rated movies.

sexual repression (2, Insightful)

timmarhy (659436) | more than 7 years ago | (#17780992)

this whole .xxx debate is about sexual repression. while having a .xxx domain won't stop the less responsible porn peddlers from invading the rest of the web as they already have done, it certainly won't hurt at all. what this debate is really about, it the religous right not being able to stand the thought of someone living a life style they consider sinful. if we let them have their way the world would be forced into a scary ned flanders world.

Re:sexual repression (1)

impleri (982548) | more than 7 years ago | (#17781062)

That's bull. Blaming this on the religious right is about as bad as comparing something current to a fascist state in the earlier part of this century. It's not always the RR fighting these things against the rest of humanity. If the rest of the world really cared what Jerry Falwell that much, we would never have seen Howard Stern OnDemand, the Spice Channel, the Playboy Channel, or any other venues of the adult industry. Blaming it on a minority of religious zealots is a cop-out designed to obscure one's own lack of knowledge. Stop scapegoating and get on with it. And, just to point out that I'm not strictly flaming, I do agree with your first two sentences. A .xxx domain won't solve everything (and if it did, the RR would back it up because then they can configure their filters to block out one TLD and call it a day), but it may be at least a step in the right direction. Where it will fail, however, is where groups/organizations aren't really "in" the adult industry, but are marketing/selling/advertising that type of product. They'll probably want to be a .com, .net, or .org, depending on the group because they don't want to directly associate with the adult industry, but do want to make money off of similar products.

Re:sexual repression (1)

timmarhy (659436) | more than 7 years ago | (#17781122)

it's not a cop out, please show me a group thats speaking out against .xxx that has a single valid reason for doing so that doesn't involve god/money? the only discussion about .xxx should be on a technical level for the purposes of protecting kids, and i'm not seeing anything useful being tossed out there by these prudes.

and fyi, howard stern is CONSTANTLY under fire by the fcc who is pressured by your current ringwing christian government. stuff like howard and playboy came into this world with the RR kicking and screaming the whole time.

Re:sexual repression (1)

impleri (982548) | more than 7 years ago | (#17781204)

You can't group the people against .xxx as being RR if they're either about God or money. Those are two very different things here. And no, the discussion should not be entirely about technical merit, but also economics, as that is what will be affected by it. We can leave God out of it, but money is built into the system. It's called "capitalism." That's not to say that the RR is not vocal about things, but very few pay attention to them. Your last sentence is proof of it. If the RR were in power (or, to quote you, controlling "my current rightwing christian government"), then we wouldn't have Stern, Playboy, Hustler, Spice, or They may be kicking and screaming, but nobody in control of the situation is really listening to them, let alone agreeing with them. The reason why Stern is under pressure by the FCC is because he walks a very fine line between what is and isn't acceptable by the FCC for the mediums he broadcasts on. So, stop blaming the children screaming in the back of the car for something happening against their permission. Do you honestly think ICANN is going to reject .xxx because Falwell or Robertson were screaming on their TV shows, from their pulpits or soapboxes? I didn't think so.

Request granted (1)

Schraegstrichpunkt (931443) | more than 7 years ago | (#17781716)

please show me a group thats speaking out against .xxx that has a single valid reason for doing so that doesn't involve god/money?

Three words: Network Working Group [] .

I have an idea for a solution (5, Interesting)

JPriest (547211) | more than 7 years ago | (#17781044)

The reality of the matter is that even if a .xxx domain is created it

A) makes porn easier to find
B) Does not solve the problem of being able to filter it with parental control software because nobody is going to shut down the's.

The porn sites have a right to exist, who are we to force them over to .xxx domains? Forcing them all to register with some central DB so they can be black listed would also be impossible becasue there is no realistic way to keep the DB updated. My solution for addressing the filtering software problem is very simple. We amend robots.txt [] to include a section for Adult content. A simple addition on porn sites of a line like this would solve the problem.

User-agent: * Disallow: /forums/
Disallow: /members/
Disallow: /downloads/
Adult: /

Sites not interested in adding the field to robots.txt are not required to by law, but many websites would be willing to accommodate something like this to assist Net Nanny etc., but would fight having to leave behind for tooth and nail. On the internet your company name and your domain name are often the same. Moving them to another TLD would equate to making them shut down and start over under a new name.

This would also greatly assist Google etc. in blocking some of these sites where "safe search" is turned on thus prevent people form going to a by mistake and finding porn.

I have made this suggestion a number of time in the past. Maybe I should look into what it would take to get it drafted into an RFC?

Re:I have an idea for a solution (1)

timmarhy (659436) | more than 7 years ago | (#17781080)

while i can see problems with your robots.txt idea i still think it's a good idea (just because something isn't 100% silver bullet doesn't mean it's not worth having) no one is forcing porn sites to .xxx, it's simply that some registars want to create it free of interference from idiot religous groups.

The proposal does require .coms to move (1)

JPriest (547211) | more than 7 years ago | (#17781236)

The proposal likned [] in the summary states this:

Direct quote
"Any commercial Internet site or online service that "has as its principal or primary business the making available of material that is harmful to minors" would be required to move its site to that domain. Failure to comply with those requirements would result in civil penalties as determined by the Commerce Department."

Re:I have an idea for a solution (1)

textstring (924171) | more than 7 years ago | (#17781352)

I believe you have the right idea with moving the filtering to a voluntary system apart from new TLDs. However, I doubt you'd find that many volunteers unless severe pressure (or $) was placed upon them. I think there would be far more ".kids" sites or non-adult sites that would want to be a part of a content filtering system for children. This brings into question what constitutes a "kids" site and how it should be decided which is a problem in all 'ratings' system. Quite simply, we have no good solution in helping parents decide what their children should witness and no system should be implemented until we do.

Re:I have an idea for a solution (3, Informative)

pyrrhonist (701154) | more than 7 years ago | (#17781482)

I have made this suggestion a number of time in the past. Maybe I should look into what it would take to get it drafted into an RFC?

No need. There is already a standard: Platform for Internet Content Selection (PICS) [] ...

Re:I have an idea for a solution (1)

abstrak_tokatl (866054) | more than 7 years ago | (#17781572)

i tend to agree with you. the only purpose i see with the .xxx domain is simple "yellow books" finding. easy structure. That would be the best way to promote the extention. if even going that far.

Re:I have an idea for a solution (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17781616)

If you are going to amend robots for adult content, what about racism, islam, feminism, abortion, and whatever other boogeyman? The only real problem is inappropriate domain names. I actually hit AT SCHOOL because it seemed obvious enough. Boy, that was akward. But then if you are going to go after those guys what about all those stupid typo-squatting ad-filled portal-searching fuckers? In my opinion those people are the worst; at least things like actually provide conent. The way the Internet and the governing organization is structured, there are no solutions to these problems. We are still very much in the wild west era of the Internet.

Re:I have an idea for a solution (1)

Schraegstrichpunkt (931443) | more than 7 years ago | (#17781692)

Adult: /

Maybe I should look into what it would take to get it drafted into an RFC?

Maybe you should read existing RFCs [] before you propose your own.

Just do it already (4, Insightful)

garylian (870843) | more than 7 years ago | (#17781092)

I don't really get why this is such a bad idea. Especially if they make it so that any site that sells/features nudity/porn has to move to such an extension.

Let's face it. was one of the all-time great name squatting done. For the longest time, that was a porn site. How many kids and unsuspecting adults stumbled onto that one in the early days?

I'm no screaming conservative by any stretch of the imagination. I lean a lot further towards liberalism than I ever though I would, mostly because I am tired of religion affecting our laws so much, and personal freedoms being stripped from us left and right.

But I don't see any harm in setting these websites up in a much easier to control/block segment of the websphere. And many of these webmasters would love it if it was that much easier to block content by parents. Just think of all the credit card charges to crap companies that supposedly verify age because a person has a CC #? Sheesh, I had one at 16!

At the very least, I could see killing 50% of the pop-ups I run into, simply by blocking all .xxx domains if that was the only place they could be. And all these damn library filters and crap could be made easier. Block blatant porn, and anything else is fair game. I don't see them putting the Anatomy books behind locked doors so kids can't see a drawing of a nude human, and they don't do it with National Geographic, either. This makes it easy to block porn, and keep everything else open.

Besides, think of all the business that it would stir up for a while. All those porn banners having to be redone! hehehe

Re:Just do it already (1)

bmo (77928) | more than 7 years ago | (#17781212)

"At the very least, I could see killing 50% of the pop-ups I run into, simply by blocking all .xxx domains"

If only.

The .xxx domain is just another way of creating a new "land rush" for domains. That's it. It does nothing else unless you're going to, by fiat, make all porn sites move there. And who gets to define what porn is? Who decides what doesn't "contribute to the delinqency of a minor?"

In my Dad's day it was Rock&Roll and pinball machines that were T3H 3V1L

All because some people can't remove the twist from their undies.


You think Internet porn should be outlawed? (1)

JPriest (547211) | more than 7 years ago | (#17781462)

You do understand that this proposition covers not just creating the TLD, but banning adult content from the rest of the Internet right? You don't think everyone on an entire TLD requiring CC # from people surfing there would open the door to fraud, or at least some unethical billing practices?

I would expect a community like Slashdot to strongly oppose this measure, but this does not seem to be the case because few people bothered to realize that this proposition covers more than just a creation of another generic TLD.

Re:Just do it already (1)

MichaelSmith (789609) | more than 7 years ago | (#17781468)

Especially if they make it so that any site that sells/features nudity/porn has to move to such an extension.

How are you going to make them, short of sending in the US marines?

Re:Just do it already (3, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17781478)

You don't see why this is a bad idea? What constitutes porn?

Does any depiction of a bare breast, buttock, vulva, or penis indicate porn? If you ask my parents then yes it does. If you ask me, I say No. Michelangelo's "David" is not pornographic. "The Birth of Venus" by Botticelli is not porn. Those two examples show my opinion on the matter. However, many others will disagree with me and will state that one or the other, or even both are pornographic. What about images that depict Dante's "Inferno"? Many of those paintings show naked bodies being consumed by a demon, and some show burning naked flesh. Are those pornographic?

You may ask why am I bringing up paintings or "works of art" in regards to a .xxx tld. The simple answer is "Why Not?" Let's state this another way, Obscene material is only obscene to those that decide it is obscene. A .xxx tld is not only going to be related to porn. It will be related to anything that someone considers obscene. I know it when I see it [] * cannot be applied to obscene material unless obscene material is categorized, and that statement, however, truthful it may be, is not good enough.
* Note: that link is to the history version of Wikipedia, following that link should take you to the Jan 5th version that was current when I wrote this text.

Who decides what belongs on a .xxx domain? Will that decision be changed later in time, by a different group of people?

All a .xxx tld will do is first cause a bunch of people to waste money on a new tld for their company. Does that mean that we will have to get a domain for the government? I mean technically and have nothing to do with or The whitehouse website is not a commercial entity, so why does it need a .com? Yes, I know many people do not use the Top Level Domains correctly. However, the first few Top Level Domains were created to keep people from having issues like this. The foundation was set, it is everyone's fault that instead of a well built and maintained house, we only have a shack built of salvaged items.

A .xxx tld is only a money grab from some and a political move by others. Many "Christian" organizations do not want a .xxx tld as it will legitimize obscene material. Just like how a red-light district legitimized the acts done in a red-light district. These used to be more prevalent here in the States. Freedom organizations should be against this is as it is a censorship move. This is a move against adults and not a solution for kids. .com is the most accurate tld to use when dealing with obscene material that makes money. In most people's views this is pornography. Pornography that makes money directly, should be on a .com. Pornography that makes money through ads and such, should be on a .org or a .us or any country tld. However, since no one is going to force those to work, why should they force a .xxx to work? Just because it has three letters that are all the same? If they cannot make go to the store website, while making go to an informational website dealing with targets, how are they going to make go to a site involving targeting of people with fluids from other people? Or will Target the store purchase the in order to "protect their name" and redirect you to

The following paragraph is a bit off from my above, but I wanted to include it.
Do you remember when online services blocked the word 'breast' in order to "protect" people? They ended up blocking people from finding information related to breast cancer and other information that had the word breast in it. That block was removed, as people just started using br3ast more often.

Re:Just do it already (1)

bky1701 (979071) | more than 7 years ago | (#17781676)

Popups hardly come from only porn sites. I have only seen less than 10% that do. Most are stupid "you won!" ads, that this will not block at all (if that's your goal, support a .ads or .spy domain...).

A good question on the topic of porn is, why does it need blocked or moved? What is wrong with it? Do more people die from looking at porn than eating at McDonald's, fighting over religion and all other such things? No one has ever died of porn. I don't care what some loud-mouthed conservative says; porn hurts no one, kids or adults.

I personally find a lot of things "obscene", but unlike these people, I don't think my opinion is something the whole world should be forced to follow.

Find porn obscene? Find a way to block it yourself, it's not societies issue.

here's another article by seth finkelstein (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17781110)

about the censorware project and former slashdot editor michael sims. [] Maybe now that he no longer has bitchslap access, posting the truth won't result in your ip being permanently banned.

I want one (1)

lucky130 (267588) | more than 7 years ago | (#17781120)

If they offered .xxx domains and just made it voluntary, I'd totally get one. They might not offer any specific utility, but I think it might be kinda funny to have.

And how much do you think would be worth? I'll race ya! :)

mnb Re:I want one (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17781282)

And how much do you think would be worth? I'll race ya! :)
I'd go after and, personally.

This is stupid (1)

chairpatrol (300773) | more than 7 years ago | (#17781132)

All the pron people will register the new .xxx but they will also keep their .com domains. Man, it's as if people think .com is really only commerce sites or all .org are are non-profits.

Re:This is stupid (1)

gregmac (629064) | more than 7 years ago | (#17781656)

Not to mention -- as the article points out -- businesses will probably feel the need to register their copyrights and names (just to protect them from being turned into a porn site), which means an extra $60/yr going to some domain registrar. Porn sites will keep their .com's, as you say (why would they give them up? Even if they did, the majority of names are utterly useless for any other purpose..). Domain squatters will register everything they can and attempt to resell desirable domains..

Basically, the *ONLY* group this benefits is domain registrars, who will profit from the $60/yr (and possibly the squatters - but the domains are expensive enough that the resell prices will have to be high if they expect to get any short-term return - eg, if you sell two .xxx's of the 30 you hold, you need to get $900 a pop.. actually I have no idea if that's low or high in the reseller business. Over $8 sounds expensive to me :) ).

It's a scam (1, Flamebait)

bmo (77928) | more than 7 years ago | (#17781152)

It's a scam, just like Ralph Yarro's CP80. (from the Canopy/SCO scam to yet another. What, exactly, is in the water in Utah?)

Jeez. Let's repeat this again:



Why not just bypass ICANN with a plug-in? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17781172)

Pun definitely intended. But what's to stop someone from setting up an alternate DNS server, take orders for domains like .xxx, .fun. .cum, etc, and then create a plug-in (another pun), or even have the browser hard code this functionality (heck, hard code it into Linux) to query the alternative DNS server? I'm quite surprised Microsoft hasn't done this already with IE, they could make another fortune setting up their own DNS server.

Re:Why not just bypass ICANN with a plug-in? (1)

zcat_NZ (267672) | more than 7 years ago | (#17781350)

like [] ? (No link, because the 'plug-in' is aggressive spyware and likely to self-install just by viewing that website. Visit at your own risk.)

Re:Why not just bypass ICANN with a plug-in? (1)

zcat_NZ (267672) | more than 7 years ago | (#17781364)

Dammit, slashdot added the link automatically. Guess I should've previewed.

Better idea (0, Offtopic)

momerath2003 (606823) | more than 7 years ago | (#17781178)

How about Congress spend its time doing more important things, like PASSING THE BUDGET. The DOE and its labs need a budget so they can avoid firing hundreds of important scientists.

If we care.. (4, Informative)

wanax (46819) | more than 7 years ago | (#17781184)

The basic issue of porn, etc, isn't gonna go away: a significant proportion of people think that sex is bad/dirty etc. In the US we now have a fairly zealous set of laws prohibiting various sexual action/production (just look at the headline yesterday about the 17 year old who's in prison 10 year mandatory for getting a blow job from a 15 year old). With people that are willing to agitate for these beliefs around, I think in terms of technology we should work to make things like porn as clearly classed as possible, like the xxx domain. I would much rather fight over these issues in the .xxx domain, rather than having my freedoms circumscribed in misguided efforts to attain the approval of the zealous because porn is 'hard to filter.'

The whole DNS is a scam (0, Flamebait)

saskboy (600063) | more than 7 years ago | (#17781198)

I don't like how DNS is run at all. The business with phishing sites, and name stealing is bad enough, but if .xxx is bad because places might block it, why isn't .ca or .org bad?

Why don't we just have everything be .com and then we don't have to remember if our site is or or or etc..

Helpful in the long run (4, Interesting)

RyoShin (610051) | more than 7 years ago | (#17781230)

While I can't speak much about the registry part of a .xxx name, I believe that it would be useful in the long run.

While porn ad sites don't care about age, regular pay-for-porn sites would probably prefer those with access to a credit card, meaning those who can likely be there legally. Basically, market the .xxx name for sites that are looking for a purely adult audience. Not just porn, but maybe places like adultfriendfinder, discussions involving less pleasent ideas, and so forth.

The government could work off this, too. They allow it to pass, and encourage its adoption by the "less scrupulous businesses", and in return for them moving to a .xxx and helping the government look better at "protecting children", the FBI and what not leans off them a little. Yes, there are filters in place for porn, but they aren't always the best- it can be hard to teach a basic filter the difference between HOT NAKED BOOBIES and a page about breast cancer. Along with blocking out content that shouldn't be, it means that content that shouldn't get through does. A .xxx domain would ensure that the filter knows what to and not to pick out. (Hell, some crappy ones might now mark this page as pornographic since I mentioned "boobies".)

I can understand the fear of governments forcing porn sites to move to .xxx, and thus bringing us into the realm of "what exactly defines porn", but if it can stay as optional as choosing a .com or .net domain, then I don't see a large downfall. I'm sure others will disagree with me, though, and reply as such. (I welcome this, as someone may talk about a point I haven't thought of.)

Re:Helpful in the long run (2, Insightful)

pestilence669 (823950) | more than 7 years ago | (#17781392)

Web pages about breast cancer are next on the list to be censored. Remember, the U.S.A. believes that all breasts, regardless of context, are sinful & dirty. Even breast feeding an infant will get people wound up.

The breasts are for feeding children. Somehow, everyone has forgotten that they are just food dispensers. The anti-porn movement has begun to influence common sensibilities. "Moral values" groups would rather have mothers feed their child formula (much less healthy), than risk exposing a nipple in public. This has got to stop.

Porn will eventually broaden to include anything "unpopular," the future definition of obscenity. When people begin to cover naked statues, it's gone too far. When they become hysterical over a breast, it's gone too far. Anyone who believes online porn is the biggest world problem worth tackling, should be shot for their irrational beliefs. If you hate your body, kill yourself.

Re:Helpful in the long run (1)

crashnbur (127738) | more than 7 years ago | (#17781712)

Basically, market the .xxx name for sites that are looking for a purely adult audience. Not just porn...

If you want to include sites aimed primarily at adults that aren't porn, then perhaps .xxx isn't the best top-level domain for them. I can think of only a handful of domains that could work, .adult seeming to be an obvious choice, but since .com or .org can work for those sites as well, why do we need an adult-only domain name again?

On a lighter note, this story and its comments will be one of the top-ranked search results for months to come, because every teen in the country who searches for anything related to porn is going to be led here at some point. ...or it will be banned for the consistent use of various porn-related keywords.

TLDs are for countries (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17781250)

It's really that simple.

Auction off the .xxx rights... (1)

WoTG (610710) | more than 7 years ago | (#17781262)

Who gets the licensing money for TLD's anyway? ICANN?

Anyway, the company (presumably the one in the article summary) stands to make millions auctioning off the prized .xxx domains. Don't assume for a second that or is going to sell for $10/year or whatever the going rate for a .com is today. They will go to the highest bidder, probably for 7 or maybe even 8 figures.

IMHO, I'd leave it as it is. You'll never get ALL the porn sites to move to .xxx's, and everyone will end up getting the .xxx's just to protect their brand image anyway. The biggest winner will be the company running that TLD, and maybe whoever gives out TLDs.

XXX as a domain name (1)

bcfrisbee (1056418) | more than 7 years ago | (#17781292)

If porn or adult sites could be required to register under the .XXX domain, that would make it easier to block (I assume, perhaps incorrectly). At least you know you don't want to be there looking for nature pictures.

Damn the puritans (4, Insightful)

pestilence669 (823950) | more than 7 years ago | (#17781296)

The idea that the Internet should be made "safe" is offensive to me on so many levels. If parents would do their job and not let their kids roam the Internet unsupervised, this entire argument would disappear. I, for one, want the puritans the hell away from technology legislation. What about you?

The Internet is not a playground for children. It's not a fun Christian diversion. It's a network for anyone and everyone to connect to one another electronically. Let's not turn it into Disneyland or Utah. The last thing society needs is FCC-like regulations on everything they do online. Besides, the responsibility in raising children shouldn't fall into the hands of people than don't have any. Parents need to police this issue, not parents AND single individuals.

The "save the children" argument is just a cheap way to achieve the anti-porn agenda. Don't be fooled. It has nothing to do with kids. Trust me, they'll have pre-marital sex and get each other pregnant without online porn. It's been happening for 1,000's of years and will happen for a thousand more. Humans will do what they're biologically designed to do. Legislation can't stop that.

It CAN, however, open the door for more censorship-inspired legislation. How long until the FCC steps in and begins to fine people that use profanity online? I don't think I'm exaggerating my fears. It's already ridiculous that you can't say "Shit" on the radio. After all, how many kids listen to Larry King Live?

Censorship of any kind is fascism. It doesn't matter what cause it's attached to. Today it's porn. Tomorrow it's anti-Americanism. Just because you may not agree with porn, doesn't mean that laws should be passed to control it. Look away. Install commercially available filtering products. Don't let your kids surf unsupervised. For that matter, don't leave your kids unsupervised near ANYTHING you don't want them around. Just don't ask big brother to watch over you. That fucks us all.

Who decides when a site is a .xxx site? (0, Redundant)

Marcus K (1047844) | more than 7 years ago | (#17781300)

And what about those sites that don't want to move to .xxx. Should be force them to move?

Are you serious? (1)

VisiX (765225) | more than 7 years ago | (#17781322)

I keep seeing the argument that a .xxx tld will more porn easier to find. Do you really think it could be any easier to find porn on the internet? If you think there is a chance that kids can go on the net and surf around and not happen onto porn then you need a reality check. Porn on the net is abundant and easily accessible.

There are reasons .xxx is a bad idea, but "it will make porn easier for kids to find" is certainly not one of them.

But then there'll be (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17781406)

What about .cx? (1)

G3ckoG33k (647276) | more than 7 years ago | (#17781416)

It used to work fine for g.o.a.t.s.e. .cx But, maybe it gives too bad vibes for pr0n viewers too.

Better than nothing (1)

edwardpickman (965122) | more than 7 years ago | (#17781424)

Since there's no perfect solution let's do nothing seems to be the attitude. The primary opposition in truth seems to be the percieved feeling that it legitimizes porn in some way. At least it would give them a fighting chance to block the bulk of porn. It's a loosing battle to remove all porn. Start doing image searches on Google, you'll find lots of nudity. Everyone wants a magic bullet solution. There is none.

Quite Useful (2, Funny)

Flwyd (607088) | more than 7 years ago | (#17781426)

With a .xxx TLD I'd finally be able to distinguish between as a motivational business website and as a site featuring pictures and videos of semen.

It will also allow us to distinguish between sites run by Landover Baptist Church, George W. Bush, and Bill Clinton.

Categories? (2, Interesting)

abes (82351) | more than 7 years ago | (#17781436)

At first glance, the .xxx idea seems fine to me. Right now the .com domain space is cluttered with random domain names that will bring up porn. It's not so much the children, as just the sanity of it all. The probability that you can type in a random URL and likely pull up porn says that the usefulness of the domain name is diminishing.

The domain name is supposed to be some type of mapping between a company's name, general interest, etc. to a specific web page. This was great when the web was small, but even without all the porn, it still mostly fails. Thus the search engine.

So URLs are relegated to (sometimes) brand name, (sometimes) company names, bookmarks, and printed ads. That is, all other times, it doesn't really matter what the domain name is.

The .xxx TLD ends up being a small subset of a larger problem, and doesn't even fix the subset problem. As many people have suggested, it's not going to force porn companies from using .com. It may act as a magnet for children, though I'll suspect most browsers will block .xxx by default (think of the children!). Making the entire venture, a method to get lots of money for some TLD company.

Perhaps a better approach would be to actually put some structure on naming. A hierarchical is already somewhat in use per domain, but is not problem free. Also, is essentially the same as

Tagging is an already wide-used technique employed on the net, why not use it for names too? The tags can be done in an inclusive manner, such that an organization can allow acceptance of a particular web page to that tag. For example, 'child' could be applied to make sure there is no objectionable material. But wait, by whose standard? Well, there could be several 'child' tag organizations. For parents, they can pick the one which agrees with their standards.

Am I in favor of censorship? Definitely not. But I'm also going to have to live with the fact that some people are going to disagree with my sensibilities. Why not give them their own playground, and get them out of mine?

It's all about the money. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17781460)

Can someone tell me when was the last time that all the countries of the world agreed on the same policy?
I am having a hard time here.

Use xxx instead of www (3, Interesting)

Derling Whirvish (636322) | more than 7 years ago | (#17781474)

If it is such a good idea, then why don't webmasters use xxx instead of www in their URLs? It would allow for all the filtering that a top-level domain name would. Just label a site something like "" instead of "". Simple.

Or is it simply about the registrars making more money off of a new TLD?

wtf? (1)

abstrak_tokatl (866054) | more than 7 years ago | (#17781522)

what gives... .XXX is either porn or adult themed. what's the problem? That they are easily blocked by parental controls? (1)

88Seconds (242800) | more than 7 years ago | (#17781536)

The mind can only boggle.

Seriously, if the .xxx tld is passed, then all it does is grant the domain registrar a licence to print money. Any company or organisation wishing to protect its brand/image may be unwillingly forced to pay for registration in the .xxx namespace purely to stop others from putting up things they do not want to be associated with. While some here might say that that is tough, and I'd be inclined to agree with them, the only one guaranteed to be making any money from all of this will be the domain registrar.

A few landsharks may also make money from litigation and suing domain squatters, but it does not necessarily mean they are going to make any money.

Would a .XXX domain be helpful for parents ? (1)

jalet (36114) | more than 7 years ago | (#17781628)

Sure it would !

Where could parents find porn otherwise ?

Good Idea, Bad Implemenation (1)

Cracell (788266) | more than 7 years ago | (#17781700)

I believe we should add it but not require it. Due to the difficulties in defining and enforcing such a rule. In general though as the web becomes more sophisticated we can more easily block things and this problem should take care of itself. My assumption is those running these sites do so to make a profit. And children do not buy things online, thus they are not a desirable audience. So my assumption from this is that this problem will deal with itself over time with or without a top level domain. And in truth, so what if little jimmy saw boobies. I accidentally stumbled across stuff when I was 12 or so (and had no interest) I closed the screen and moved on. If little jimmy walks in on grandma in the shower however...he will be scarred for life. And if they are looking for it...they will find one way shape or form or another.
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