Let’s talk about xxx

It has been written before on many blogs, the .xxx top-level domain name (TLD) has been officially approved by ICANN.This means that besides the well known .com, .net, org, info etc., you now also can order the .xxx domain.

Now, there are many reasons why you might want it, and many why you don’t want it. But it all ends up with two conclusions; no one wants it, and everyone will buy it.

First, a little bit of history. Everyone knows that when mentioning xxx we are talking about pornographic websites, actually, the hardcore pornographic websites. When the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA) came around and started to set up a voluntary rating program, there were different types of ratings. G (General Audiences), PG (Parental Guidance), PG-13 (Parental-Guidance and over 13), R (restricted) and NC-17 (Not admitted under 18).
Still, this did not qualify all movies. Pornographic movies were lacking any kind of rating. Hence the X, which meant there was no rating (or-unrated). So, quickly the x-rating was associated with pornography. But there were a lot of unrated movies, also non-pornographic movies, which actually introduced the term ‘unrated’.
But within the world of pornography there was quite a difference between soft and hard erotica. Which soon introduced the xxx-rating, which is not an official rating at all. But it means it is the most explicit (hard) form you will find.

Back to the story.

A specific domain for anything erotica actually sounds like a good idea. Just like .com for commercial productions, .info for informative, .org for organisations, .gov for government… it makes total sense.

Better yet, you can block the .xxx TLD in any kind of filter, which actually adds to the safe surfing habits that parents need to get working with their children.

But, if you are a bit more known with how the internet works, and how companies on the internet work, the .xxx domain will only have the opposite effect.

It is not worth worrying about legit, professional and self-respecting erotic and pornographic websites. It is a business, just like any other, and any kind of ‘good’ erotic website will classify themselves like that. This will make sure that filters like Net-Nanny or even the built-in filters from FireFox, Internet Explorer etc. will filter it out and block the visit of the site.
To be honest, it is of no use for an erotic website that minors are visiting it. Minors have no way of paying for adult services online using a credit-card. So there is no money to be made there – legally.

It is the less-legit websites you have to worry about. The ones that try to make money from relatively three things:
– Selling you memberships to their or related sites.
– Showing you advertisements (also in form of content for other sites – so the more material you see, the more money they earn).
– Form a hosting platform for malicious software.

The reason why this is the worrisome part is not so much even for the malicious software, but because the money is earned by showing you as much as possible content. Because they show content as being the advertisement itself.
But these sites do not try to earn money by getting you to become a subscriber to one of their advertising sites (although they earn a bit through it, it is not a lot). They just try to create the page-views, trying to show you more, and more, and more. These sites are preying on surfers who stumble by, and get hooked up by clicking on one image or movie after another.
Especially minors are a target audience; they can see a lot of content without having a credit card or any kind of age restriction. And they generate a lot of pageviews – bannerviews.

These sites do not profit from a .xxx domain name. The .xxx domain name forces you as a surfer to explicitly look and categorize a site as being pornographic. So there is no ‘accidentally’ stumbling upon.
This explains why these kind of less-legit sites are absolutely not interested in this. Because filtering works too well, which will put them mostly out of business.

But if these sites will not move to .xxx, there is not legit site who will do this then. Because, if this market still exists on the .com levels, why corner yourself in the .xxx field?

So, in the end, the .xxx TLD has no functionality whatsoever. It will not do what it is supposed to.

But still, every company will buy a .xxx domain name. And I mean every company, not only the erotic ones. Because, if you are Nestle, for example, you do not want anyone else to have a nestle.xxx domain name. Or worse, a boyscouts.xxx or girlscouts.xxx domain name. Coca-Cola.xxx, salvationarmy.xxx, sarahpalin.xxx … you name it. All these companies will buy ‘their’ .xxx domain names to prevent abuse of their names or brands.

At $75 per domain name registration, while a normal .com address is ‘only’ $34 without any rebates – there is only one big winner of this .xxx TLD happening, which is the ICANN itself.

They said themselves to be expecting 250,000 registrations this year. Well, that is a nice $18.75 million dollars. That is one way to print your own money.

 

 

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