Universities Buying Up .xxx Domains To Stop Porn Sites Showing, Once Again, That .xxx Is A Pure Money Grab

from the .xxx dept

For many years, we've pointed out that the introduction of new top level domains (TLDs) has always been more about the cash grab than anything reasonable. The whole point is to get a bunch of companies to pay up to buy theirdomain.tld, just to prevent others from squatting. And now that .xxx is around, the same thing is happening... even to the point that Universities and colleges are buying up .xxx domains to keep them away from porn sites. Of course, this is a total waste of money, but various schools feel they need to do it. In the end, it seems like these new TLDs come across more as a protection racket than anything else. You feel the need to buy them... or run the risk of someone else "doing something bad" with them.


Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  •  
    identicon
    Rekrul, Nov 18th, 2011 @ 4:15am

    So cyber-squatting is going to allowed with .xxx domains?

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 18th, 2011 @ 4:15am

    So now there is a harvard.xxx. Why should anyone give a fuck rather than simply surfing to harvard.edu?

     

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      Anonymous Coward, Nov 18th, 2011 @ 5:01am

      Re:

      "Why should anyone give a fuck rather than simply surfing to harvard.edu?"

      Why should anyone give a fuck at all about what it is called?

      If I want to find harvard university, I wont try out every possible combination of names involving harvard in my address bar. I'll just search for "harvard university" with Google, or Bing, or Yahoo, Or DuckDuckGo, or... and once I find it, I bookmark it.

       

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      gorehound (profile), Nov 18th, 2011 @ 6:24am

      Re:

      harvard.xxx
      harvard sluts.xxx
      harvard big dicks.xxx
      harvard sissies.xxx

       

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    xcountrytransplant, Nov 18th, 2011 @ 5:09am

    .xxx

    I may catch some flak for this, but I remember a few years back, in order to protect kids, I think it was the Bush admin wanted to create a kid-friendly domain. That just seemed stupid and backward to me, I think that creating a .xxx domain would be much more effective to that end because it would automatically provide a filter for adult content--schools could just block sites with .xxx and it'd be more effective

    Regardless, I agree with fellow anonymous cowards--if you go to a .xxx site, you aren't doing it because you want to view information about the campus.

    Well, maybe you do want information, but not the kind you get at a .edu...

     

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      Anonymous Coward, Nov 18th, 2011 @ 5:17am

      Re: .xxx

      am going on gut feeling here...but i'm guessing there is no requirement to use such a TLD, probably also nothing against registering a kid oriented site with that TLD ever. Of course your website would fail and you would come under scrutiny for that, but doubt it's illegal if your content is not bad

       

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      freak (profile), Nov 18th, 2011 @ 5:21am

      Re: .xxx

      Because of rampant over-zealous blocking, and because of the price, you can bet that not many actual porn sites will have a .xxx domain.

       

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      xenomancer (profile), Nov 18th, 2011 @ 5:26am

      Re: .xxx

      create a kid-friendly domain
      This is actually a smarter means of protecting kids than presumptively lumping all pron into its own TLD. TLDs may act in an exclusionary sense (notice any .edu domains dedicated to porn?) but there will always be those who branch out and use other TLDs for the same purpose (like howthingswork.com and whitehouse.com). You can create a TLD with strict requirements for use to limit the chaff (.edu, .mil, .gov, .us, etc), but to pretend that creating a porn TLD will automatically remove the porn from the other TLDs is just plain stupid.


      After all, the internet is for porn, not just that little area of it with all the red lights and friendly women.

       

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      That Anonymous Coward (profile), Nov 18th, 2011 @ 5:31am

      Re: .xxx

      Many of the porn producers are totally against the idea of the .xxx domain. They worry they will be forced into that space and no one will ever see them again, or cyber squatters will buy up their domains and charge them bajillions of dollars for them.

      The simple elegant solution would have been to offer the early access to established domains/corps/etc and only charge them $1 a year to lock their xxx domain. But there was a way to make money, so instead we have all of this fear that web users are so stupid they will believe a .xxx domain might be legit for Harvard so Harvard spends a bunch of cash to make sure the domain is theirs forever.

      Scared of being associated with porn, why are we still in the Victorian Age pretending no one looks at porn? Its a huge industry in this country and we all pretend no one would look at it.

      Viva la PORN!

       

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      Chris-Mouse (profile), Nov 18th, 2011 @ 5:47am

      Re: .xxx

      That just seemed stupid and backward to me, I think that creating a .xxx domain would be much more effective to that end because it would automatically provide a filter for adult content--schools could just block sites with .xxx and it'd be more effective

      We used to have the perfect filter for .xxx, no DNS would ever resolve it. How much porn did that block? Unless you mandate that porn must be on .xxx domains, and manage to make that stick worldwide, blocking .xxx simply becomes one more thing to add to internet censor/black/block lists.

      Good luck with any such mandate. It might have been possible 30 years ago, but not today

       

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    DannyB (profile), Nov 18th, 2011 @ 5:35am

    Why would freetards be against this?

    Why are freetards against a business model that allows people to make lots of money over a long time for doing nothing but making a few minor configuration changes one single time?

    Isn't it good for the economy? Think of all the money changing hands in exchange for nothing physical and for no real significant benefit other than to prevent damage to your brand?

    I guess I must be a freetard.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 18th, 2011 @ 5:41am

    Hey maybe they want to corner the market on college porn those girls gone wild guys are doing alright

     

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      Donnicton, Nov 18th, 2011 @ 5:54am

      Re:

      Colleges lower tuition costs by cashing in on the college campus porn industry?


      Well, it's all on-location filming so it's not like there is any overhead either....

       

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        That Anonymous Coward (profile), Nov 18th, 2011 @ 6:04am

        Re: Re:

        Lower tuitions?! HA!
        They would charge more by offering a "be a media darling" studies course.
        They could put cameras in all the rooms, and let life play out.

        I mean... watching grungy looking burned out kids during finals is still better than Jersey Shore right?

         

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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 18th, 2011 @ 6:03am

    One would have thought that currently at least, US universities have more real concerns than a porn site at theirname.xxx.
    How about actual child abuse on campus?
    Ah, if only defensive co-ordinators were allowed to marry.

     

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      That Anonymous Coward (profile), Nov 18th, 2011 @ 6:11am

      Re:

      you left off date rape, drugging women for sex, and covering up scandals for "stars".

      When your name is more important than whats right, your doing it wrong.

       

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    Josef Anvil (profile), Nov 18th, 2011 @ 7:06am

    I'm totally confused

    Maybe it's just me, but I simply don't get it. The porn industry is against the .xxx tld and now you have schools buying up the .xxx tld to protect themselves from porn.

    WTF?!?!

    The porn people feel their content will be filtered from their consumers. I don't get that. Are they afraid that kids will no longer reach them at school or that adults at work won't be able to view their content??? Why are they not more concerned about a competitor using their URL with the new tld, as that seems to be the more reasonable fear.

    As for the schools being worried about porn people using their URL, WTF??? Anyone typing in harvarduniversity.xxx is almost certainly looking for porn in the form of ivy league co-eds and is not confusing it with the actual university.

    I just don't get it. Why is it that so many people want to act like porn doesn't exist? The movie industry does roughly $11 billion in ticket sales while the porn industry does roughly $11 billion annually. Sounds to me like Star Wars and Star Whores are doing equally well and might even share the same audience.

     

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    rubberpants, Nov 18th, 2011 @ 8:02am

    That's a nice domain name you got there. It would be a shame if something were to happen to it.

     

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    brandon (profile), Nov 18th, 2011 @ 8:03am

    They are safe guarding their name because congress will certainly make .xxx domain mandatory, and it will pass because because as long as it is still accessible and not modified there is no free speech issue. I have nothing against putting pornography in one area so my niece doesn't come across the stuff while doing a simple search those images show up under everything you type in.

     

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      btr1701 (profile), Nov 18th, 2011 @ 9:18am

      Re:

      > congress will certainly make .xxx domain mandatory, and it
      > will pass because because as long as it is still accessible
      > and not modified there is no free speech issue.

      Except for the fact that Congress doesn't have authority over the whole planet. How are they going to force a German or Russian or Brazilian web site to abide by the XXX domain law they pass?

      And who gets to decide what's sexual enough to qualify? Some people don't think anything short of full penetration shots qualifies as porn. Others think the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit issue or the Victoria's Secret Lingerie Show or major network TV shows are porn. Some ultra-religious people believe anytime a woman is shown with *any* part of her body uncovered, it's porn.

      Whose values is Congress going to codify into the law in the US? And won't those people whose values don't make the cut have a 1st Amendment claim?

       

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      Anonymous Coward, Nov 18th, 2011 @ 9:23am

      Re:

      Dude, the US isn't the only country in the world. Congress can't control the other countries. They can put porn on whatever TLD they want no matter what the US gubm'nt says about it.

       

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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 18th, 2011 @ 8:08am

    Given the recent revelations concerning Penn State and Syracuse, perhaps this makes some sense...

    ;)

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 18th, 2011 @ 8:36am

    TLD's in general are just a cash grab. They don't reveal the server's geographic location anymore, lawyers will descend like vultures on anyone who would use the multiple endings to enable otherwise identical URLs and the only time anyone actually cares what the TLD is is when someone thinks its funny (or fun.ny?) to incorporate it as part of a word.

    Their only real function is to make idiots and corporations waste money buying the same URL multiple times and of course produce work for lawyers when someone inevitably manages to claim one first.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 18th, 2011 @ 9:07am

    But of course colleges and universities and other public institutions need to buy up xxx domains! Think of the damage to their reputations if someone else bought up those domains and posted doctored naked pictures of their presidents and facility?!?

    Surely everyone would think it was the college/university/business itself posting porn of their employees! Why else would the URL before the .XXX be the same?!? Do you know the irreparable damage that could be done to their reputations from false slanderous attacks being reported in the media! Look at that poor lady who's reputation was ruined by highly doctored videos saying she didn't help a poor white couple save their farm because she was racist!

     

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    brandon (profile), Nov 18th, 2011 @ 9:55am

    Your right congress never tries to regulate the net.

     

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    The Groove Tiger (profile), Nov 18th, 2011 @ 12:38pm

    So when are they going to create the .sucks TLD?

     

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    fb39ca4, Nov 18th, 2011 @ 3:03pm

    Has techdirt taken steps to protect itself?

    Has techdirt.xxx been purchased yet?

     

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    Keith Rozario, Nov 21st, 2011 @ 1:00am

    xxx domains

    I agree with the post, it's gotten to a point that people are viewing this as a 'protection racquet' and in order to prevent their url from being hijacked into a .xxx porn site they fork our cash to block the domain.

    That being said, cyber-squatting is cyber-squatting regardless of whether the tld is .com or .xxx. The reality is that ICANN has made it very clear, that just because you own the domain doesn't mean you own the copyright/trademark..etc etc. You can still be sued in the court of law if you own a .xxx domain that infringes on the copyrights or trademarks of others.

    In fact, ICANN have it in writing "the applicant will be deemed on notice of the intellectual property claims submitted by the other Sunrise applicant(s) and may not claim lack of notice with regard to such applicant(s) in any subsequent dispute proceeding" which is legal-jargon for don't say we didn't warn you...

    Now I doubt anyone would be stupid enough to go for something like cocacola.xxx, that's a bankruptcy case waiting to happen, similarly I doubt cocacola isn't snapping up those domains as we speak, what's a couple of thousand dollars in domains anyway.

    It's going to be the little guys who suffer, the 'slightly' influential bloggers, who get anywhere from 300,000 to 1 million blog hits a month, and who are 'may' have their hard-earned brand names dragged through the mud with porn site or be extorted for cyber-squatting........in a sense I understand the frustration behind the case and to me at least, the xxx domain isn't going to be accomplishing what it set out to accomplish.

    For more, please visit my post on the subject:
    http://www.keithrozario.com/2011/10/xxx-domain-names-and-what-you-should-know.html

     

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    Seegras (profile), Nov 22nd, 2011 @ 6:55am

    The solution is to open the name space

    To totally, completely dry up any stupid domaingrabbing, the only thing that works is to open the namespace completely.

    Allow all entities to register any domain below a TLD of 3 to 8 (or maybe more) characters. But not own the TLD, of course. And explicitly make clear that a TLD is a place, not a Trademark, and that nobody may bring in lawsuits regarding them, or have any rights (apart from the first-come first-serve rights stemming from the registration) to them.

     

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    Invisible_Jester89, Jan 2nd, 2012 @ 10:07pm

    And they are doing this because... their students, who live on campus and probably have sex lives, *might* look up porn on their free time between classes, OHNOES?

    Money? Not unless you're selling photos of nude sorority girls, and doing that without permission is pretty illegal as far as I'm aware. Because they'll look up porn in class? Okay, *I* am a college student, and I have yet to see one bored student do anything other than play WoW during class while my Anthropology professor was talking about the Rwandan Genocide. In fact, most professors now don't even allow computers in their lecture rooms because it distracts both the student and students around said student.

    Furthermore, these students are more often than not legal adults, or at least 18 or older. For further emphasis, you only need to be 18 to rent a porno from video retailer chain Family Video's Adult section! Other students are legally old enough to drink, they sure as Hell don't need protection from porn when half of them are already shagging at all-night pre-Midterm parties when they should be studying.

    ... I don't get it. Punchline is where?

     

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