The porn industry is about to get its own version of the ubiquitous .com domain, bringing a seXXXy new element to the Internet. The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN), the corporation that oversees the creation of top-level domain names like .com, .net, and .biz, is expected to approve the .xxx domain this Friday.
Oddly enough, religious groups and porn stars alike are aligned in their opposition to the new domain. While they haven't exactly joined forces (talk about your strange bedfellows!), each group has launched their own efforts to protest the .xxx domain.
What is it about the new domain that has adult entertainers and conservative groups in a tizzy?
Religious groups are worried that the dot-xxx suffix will entice even more pornographic material to the web, and result in more profitability for the porn industry.
Porn stars, on the other hand, believe that collecting sites of an adult nature into this new domain will "ghettoize" the industry, and possibly make it a target of more regulation.
One thing's for sure, the dot-xxx decision will certainly result in new business, since hundreds of thousands of adult sites are expected to register new domains at around $60 per year. However, this would be in addition to their existing web presence—the majority of the businesses will likely continue to offer their services using their dot-com names.
Basically, it sounds like the .xxx domain will simply mirror what's already available. It would obviously make it easier for some people to search out porn, but it would also make filtering those domains a relatively simple task.
As of 2010, there were an estimated five to six million adult entertainment sites on the web. It's hard to imagine why a new domain created for this purpose is worth freaking out about, whether you're opposed to pornography or an ardent fan of it.
What do you think about the new .xxx domain?
Image via Flickr/Ryan Christopher VanWilliams