Adult entertainment now has a new home: the realm of .xxx TLD. The decision was made final by the ICANN registry, the non-profit California based organization that supervises TLDs (top level domains) like .com, .net, .org etc., when the organization’s board cemented the decision such that as of this Friday .xxx domains will be available for reservation.

Websites operating adult content under “conventional” domains like .com or .net will still have rights to function normally and will not be forced by the ICANN to move to the newly appointed niche .xxx. ICM Registry, a Florida-based company that will run .xxx, said the domain’s Web sites will be the Internet’s most trusted place for adult entertainment: ICM will monitor the sites to ensure that they prohibit spam, viruses and any other illegal behavior. And it says it will use some of the registration fees for an affiliated foundation to promote free speech and combat child pornography.

The move gives consumers “reassurance they are more protected from the risk of viruses, identity theft, credit card fraud and inadvertent exposure to child abuse images,” ICANN said Friday in a statement announcing the decision.

However, besides a more controlled and safe environment for users, it seems critics advocate that an .xxx implementation will encourage censorship and filtering by organizations and governments, which in term will deeply affect the stability of the DNS. No one would dare to ban the entire .com TLD, but the .xxx TLD would be very easy to censor entirely.

“We are disappointed that ICANN ignored the clear advice of governments worldwide, including the U.S.,” said Lawrence Strickling, assistant Commerce secretary. “This decision goes against the global public interest, and it will open the door to more Internet blocking by governments and undermine the stability and security of the Internet.”

According the ICM Registry, a .xxx domain will cost $60, with an additional $10 being charged that go to an ICM-affiliated nonprofit promoting “online responsibility” and thwarting child pornography. The domain will be reserved exclusively to the adult industry, and anyone registering a .XXX domain will be required to complete an application process endorsed and overseen by the International Foundation for Online Responsibility (IFFOR). ICM Registry says it has received applications to pre-register more than 200,000 .xxx domains so far.

What’s curious is that this can be considered as a milestone for the new TLD era of the internet. Look for in the future for more and more to-be approved extensions like .museum or .pro or .football even .facebook.

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