Kentucky's Gambling Domain Name Grab Sets A Terrible Precedent
from the governors-who-want-more-power dept
Last month, we wrote about a bizarre lawsuit in Kentucky, where a judge gave the government the ability to seize the domain names of numerous online gambling sites, even though none of them were based in Kentucky, or even registered via Kentucky-based registrars. The whole thing smelled of corruption, given that the governor is closely tied to offline casino interests, and his campaign apparently included a big promise to bring more offline casinos to Kentucky. This effort seems mostly focused on not just blocking out online competitors, but seizing their domain names. Lots of people are pushing back and explaining how ridiculous the scenario is to the judge, noting, for example, that following similar logic would allow any country to seize any domain name. For example, China could decide that the BBC website violates its laws and demand that the BBC domain name be turned over to the Chinese government. Most folks would recognize that this is ridiculous — but it’s effectively what the Kentucky governor has done.