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Saudi Arabia files gTLD objections against .virgin, .baby

updated 08:09 am EDT, Tue August 14, 2012

ICANN receives registration complaints on moral, health grounds

The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia has raised objections to certain gTLD applications. The Saudi Communication and Information Technology Commission has filed complaints with the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) over some top-level domain proposals on various taste, decency and health-related grounds in the last few days, according to The Register.

Proposals for .virgin and .baby were claimed to encourage pornography, despite being registered by Virgin Group and Johnson & Johnson respectively. The commission believes "there is a risk that this string is used in the same way as .XXX to host pornographic websites." Virgin applied for .virgin as a single-registrant gTLD, and does not plan to sell .virgin domains to customers or businesses outside the Virgin Group. Johnson & Johnson specifically stated in its bid that the .baby gTLD would be used solely for its own marketing purposes. Objections from the commission were also raised against .dating, .hot, .sex, .porn, .sexy, and .gay, suggesting that the gTLDs would promote homosexuality and be offensive to "many societies and cultures."

Citing health and morality issues, .vodka, .wine, .bar, .pub, .casino, and .poker were also objected against. Religious terminology such as .catholic, .bible, .islam, and .halal were also targeted.

Since June 13, 800 of the over 6,000 comments made to ICANN on gTLDs were filed against .sex, .porn, and .adult. These three gTLDs were applied for by ICM Registry, current manager of .xxx, with the complaints against these gTLDs being part of a campaign led by Morality in Media, a US religious group.

ICANN revealed the full list of new domain submissions in June, listing all 1,930 requests. Google applied for 101 gTLDs, Amazon 76, while Apple applied for just .apple. Obtaining a gTLD was seen as costly by many trademark owners, many of whom declined to participate, citing evaluation fees for each application set at $185,000.

By Electronista Staff
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  1. Geoduck

    Junior Member

    Joined: 01-14-10

    Anyone that would think that .baby would promote porn is a seriously messed up AH.
    The rest of their objections are garbage. They're just a bunch of religious freaks trying to push their brand of fanaticism on the rest of the world. I'd say they could rot in H*** but I think that's a foregone conclusion. This has nothing to do however, with their particular brand of religion. I've heard the same tripe from all major and several minor religions. This is what happens when you mix religion and politics.

  1. vasic

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: 05-23-05

    I am not quite clear what exactly are they trying to accomplish. After all, if this is about "indecency" and pornography, vast majority of porn is hosted under the good old .com TLD, so blocking the introduction of .virgin, .baby, .gay, .homo, .lesbo or whatever TLD they find offensive is fairly pointless.

    I have a feeling there is only one prupose to this grandstanding: making it clear to their religious islamic leaders that the state has officially protested, thereby declaring its ideological purity. Mullahs must be pleased...

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